Many accidents occur on the job, and injured employees can qualify for workers’ compensation as well as other financial assistance. However, when is an injury work-related? The state’s workers’ comp system will not kick in to cover an injury or illness that is not work-related, and some insurance companies try to deny claims on these grounds.
To protect your rights, you should analyze how you were injured. Reach out to an Austin workers’ compensation lawyer for assistance.
An Injury Suffered in the Course and Scope of Employment
Texas considers an injury work-related when it occurs during the course and scope of employment. Basically, this means while the employee is carrying on or furthering the employer’s business and includes work-related travel.
For example, Michael is traveling to a conference for his employer when he is involved in a car accident. Since is he furthering his employer’s business, he has suffered a work-related injury.
In most cases, an injury is obviously work-related because it occurs at work while a person is doing their job. For example, Susan is on the production line when a machine blows up in her face. The injuries she suffers while working quite clearly qualify as work-related.
Exceptions to the Rule
Even if you were injured at work, an injury might be exempted. For example:
- Any injury that results from an employee’s horseplay is not a work-related injury. For example, employees might push each other in chairs down the hallway for fun. If one crashes into the wall and sprains her leg, this injury is not work-related.
- Any self-injury. For example, an employee might deliberately hurt himself, hoping for benefits. This does not qualify.
- Injuries as a result of drug or alcohol impairment. If Michael crashes into someone because he is intoxicated, then his accident injuries are not work-related.
- Many criminal acts from third parties. If someone comes to work to deliberately harm an employee, then those injuries don’t qualify if motivated by personal reasons. For example, an ex- boyfriend might attack an employee out of anger. But if the motivation was work-related, then the injuries might be work-related
- Injuries that result from a voluntary, off-duty recreational activity. If a worker joins a basketball league, then the injury is not work-related even if other workers participate in the league.
These are only some of the most common exceptions. Others might apply. You should meet with an experienced attorney to better understand your legal rights.
Experienced Austin Workers’ Compensation Advocacy
Workplace injuries cost a lot of money in medical bills and lost income. As a result, many people come to our office in financial distress. Fortunately, we can help.
At DC Law, we can help workers apply and qualify for workers compensation benefits. We can also identify whether they have a valid legal claim against a third party, such as a manufacturer or coworker, which could significantly boost the amount of money you take home.
For more information, reach out to us today. One of our Austin workers’ compensation attorneys will meet with you for a free consultation. Please call 512-220-1800.