Workers’ compensation is paid to employees who are injured during the course of their employment, but when is an employee considered “on the clock?” Is it when they get in their car in the morning, when they step on the parking lot, or when they sit down at their computer and punch in? This question comes about more often than you would think because a number of workers suffer injuries during their morning or evening commute.
So if you are injured in a car accident on your way to work or on your drive home, are you still eligible for workers’ compensation benefits? After all, if you were not employed, you would not have been on the road at the time of the accident. We examine how commutes are viewed in the eyes of Minnesota workers’ compensation law in today’s blog.
Is My Commute Covered?
In general, your daily commute to and from your job is not considered to be part of your employment, and therefore insurance companies can rightfully deny your claim. But like many aspects of workers’ compensation law, there are exceptions to this rule. This isn’t a full list of exceptions, but here’s a look at some of the more common exceptions that suggest your commute may be covered under workers’ compensation in Minnesota:
- Your employer furnished your transportation and you were injured while traveling in company transportation.
- You were injured while traveling between two different work sites while on the clock.
- You sometimes work from home, and were injured while commuting from your home to the employer’s premises.
Another way to determine if you are eligible for compensation for an injury suffered on your commute is whether or not you are getting paid for your commute. If you are getting paid, you are on the clock and performing work duties. If you’re getting paid during your commute, you should have a valid injury claim case.
If you’ve been injured during your morning or evening commute, the best piece of advice we can give you is to contact a Minnesota workers’ compensation lawyer. Even if you think you have a clear case, because it’s a commute injury, it’s almost certain that you’re get an initial denial from the insurance company. To fight back against your denial and earn the largest compensation package possible, you’re going to need an experienced professional in your corner to make a strong case for your rights.
Dean Margolis and his team at Margolis Law Firm have been doing just that for their clients, and they can do the same for you. For more information, or to sit down with an attorney to discuss your case, reach out to their firm today at (952) 230-2700.