People often think of workers compensation claims as only covering events that happen on a job site or within a company-controlled building. Consequently, many people overlook opportunities to get compensation when incidents happen beyond what they might think of as the traditional workplace. For legal purposes, the workplace often extends beyond the company's premises. Here is what you need to know about filing workers compensation claims for off-premises incidents.
A workers compensation attorney will encourage anyone who suffered an accident in any work capacity to consider pursuing a claim. You may be surprised what counts as operating in a work capacity. If your boss asks you to pick them up a coffee while you're out to lunch, that could count as work. Suppose you end up in a car accident while getting the coffee. Even if you were off the clock at the moment of the accident, you might have grounds for a claim.
Generally, actions in furtherance of work off the clock only last for however long it takes to complete the task. Suppose your boss tells you to drop something off at the post office on your way home from work. If you suffered an accident before delivering the package to the post office, you might have a claim. Conversely, you probably don't have a claim if an accident happens after you've finished the work-related task.
Some companies require employees to clock in or otherwise record their hours whenever they do any kind of work. This simplifies the claims process. Even if your employer doesn't require you to clock in to track the hours, though, work is work for legal purposes.
A workers compensation lawyer will want some evidence to support that the incident occurred while you were doing something for work. Perhaps your manager sent you a text asking you to pick up coffee, for example. Other employees could also testify that your boss appointed you the person to get the coffee for everyone in the office every day. If you were delivering mail, the return address on the package could attest that the delivery was for work.
Even salaried workers can make such claims. A manager might show that they were authorized to organize parties for employees, for example. If they were injured while getting supplies for a party, that fact could support a workers compensation claim. They just have to show that this was an accepted workplace activity for a person in their position.
To learn more, contact a workers compensation attorney in your area.