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Are Workers’ Compensation Benefits Available for a Car Accident Injury?

driver making a deliveryIf you were injured in a car accident while you were working, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, these situations can be complicated. A variety of factors are involved in determining if you were engaged in work when the crash happened.

The experienced Harrisburg workers’ compensation lawyers at Schmidt Kramer know how to sort through these situations to determine if workers may be eligible to file a claim. You can discuss the specific circumstances surrounding your claim during a free, no-obligation consultation.

When May Offsite Injuries Be Covered?

Offsite injuries may be covered under the workers’ compensation system if driving is a condition of employment and necessary for the completion of the employee’s duties.

For example, commercial truck drivers, paramedics and delivery drivers are required to drive to complete the essential functions of their jobs. If these workers are injured in a car accident, they may be covered by the workers’ compensation system, even if their own negligence contributed to the accident.

Were You Acting on Behalf of Your Employer?

If driving is not one of the primary activities of your job, offsite injuries may be covered by the workers’ compensation system if you were acting in your employer’s interest at the time of the accident.

If you pursue benefits, you will need to establish the accident occurred while you were completing a work-related task within the course and scope of your employment.

Using a Company Car

While using a company car may sound like a situation where you were acting on behalf of your employer, Pennsylvania law does not specifically state that employees are eligible for workers’ compensation if they were driving a company car at the time of the accident.

You still must prove the accident occurred while you were acting within the course and scope of your employment. Some examples of acting within the scope of your employment while driving a company car could include:

  • Driving to a client or business meeting
  • Picking up supplies
  • Driving to a business office
  • Making a delivery for your employer

Coming and Going Rule

Generally, car accidents that happen on your way to or from work are not covered by workers’ compensation. This is known as the “coming and going rule.”

Personal Errand

If you originally set out to complete a work-related task for your employer but followed it up by completing a personal errand and the accident happens while completing this errand, your claim may be denied. The workers’ compensation carrier will likely argue you were no longer completing an act on behalf of your employer when the accident took place.

Other Options Besides Workers’ Compensation Benefits

If the car accident does not qualify for workers’ compensation coverage, you may have other options for getting your medical bills and other losses covered. Your employer’s or your own auto insurance may also cover these damages.

You may also be able to file a claim against the at-fault driver. However, the type of insurance you have may limit the types of damages you can pursue in a car accident lawsuit.

Learn more about full tort and limited tort insurance coverage in Pennsylvania.  

Contact Schmidt Kramer to Learn More

If you were injured while driving for work, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation. However, proving you were doing something work-related may be complicated.

That is why you should consider working with a trusted attorney who knows how to thoroughly investigate a work accident and build a robust case.

The experienced attorneys at Schmidt Kramer are ready to help you recover the benefits you deserve. There is no cost to discuss your case and we do not get paid unless we recover fair compensation.

Contact us today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation. (717) 888-8888