Minnesota law provides that employees who are injured during the scope of their work duties are able to collect compensation to pay for medical expenses, lost wages and other costs associated with their injuries. In the overwhelming majority of cases, so long as you were injured during the course of your employment, you can seek workers’ compensation for injuries, but as you might imagine, there are a few exceptions to the law. Below, we take a closer look at five exceptions that could prevent you from filing a valid claim after an on-the-job injury.
Exceptions To Workers’ Compensation Law
If your employer or their insurance company can prove that any of these five factors exist, you may find your injury claim denied.
1. Intentional Injury – If you intentionally injure yourself so that you can collect injury compensation, not only will your claim be denied, but you could also face criminal fraud charges. You can unintentionally be the cause of your work injury and still collect compensation, but if you intentionally hurt yourself, your claim can legally be rejected. However, if someone else intentionally hurts you, you may be able to seek workers’ compensation or a personal injury claim against the party, depending on the specifics.
2. Under The Influence – If you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of your injury, there’s a chance your claim will be denied. It’s worth noting that intoxication in and of itself doesn’t mean your claim will always be denied, because the insurance company needs to prove that your intoxication caused your injuries. If you slipped on a wet spot at your company’s entryway, it likely won’t matter that you were intoxicated, but if you fell off a ladder because you were drunk, you may find it tough to earn compensation, as the insurance company will argue your intoxication factored into your injuries.
3. During Your Commute – Even though you wouldn’t be taking your daily commute if not for your employment, your commute is not typically covered by workers’ compensation. Your travels to and from the office aren’t covered by workers’ compensation, but if you are driving between offices or performing work-related duties and get in a car accident, you’ll likely be covered.
4. Horseplay – If you were messing around on the clock, there’s a possibility that your claim can be denied because horseplay is not generally covered by workers’ compensation. If you were roughhousing with a co-worker or messing around on a forklift and suffered an injury, you could find it hard to have your injury claim approved by the insurance company. You’ll want an experienced lawyer by your side if this is the case.
5. At Home – The pandemic has changed how workers’ compensation law views workers who perform duties at a home office. In general, home-based injuries didn’t used to be covered, but nowadays you may be able to argue that they occurred during home-based work duties and that you have a valid claim. Expect an uphill battle with the insurance company, but injuries at a work-from-home environment are no longer automatically ineligible under the law.
If you believe you’ll run into issues with your case because of any of the above factors, or you just want a lawyer by your side to put together a strong claim, reach out to the talented team of lawyers at Margolis Law Firm. Give our team a call today at (952) 230-2700.