If you were involved in a car accident, you might consider filing a claim against the at-fault driver. However, if you were injured in a car accident while on the job, you may also be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
The experienced Cincinnati workers’ compensation attorneys at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy offer a free consultation to discuss your possible legal options. Contact us to learn more about whether you might be able to file a workers’ compensation claim after a work-related car crash.
What Is A Work-Related Car Accident?
In some jobs, driving or riding in a vehicle is a core part of the position. This includes:
- Truck driving
- Delivery driving
- Emergency response
- Food and grocery delivery
Individuals who drive for a living are more likely to be injured in a motor vehicle accident while on the job. However, there are also a few exceptions where employees who do not routinely get behind the wheel for work may still be able to file a claim for benefits after being injured in a car crash.
If you pursue workers’ compensation benefits for a car accident injury, you need to prove being in the car was work-related. Workers’ compensation insurance companies make this determination on a case-by-case basis, but some events that could be considered work-related may include:
- Running an errand for your manager or employer
- Making a delivery
- Picking up food or office supplies
- Driving another employee for a work purpose
- Traveling between multiple company sites
- Dropping off construction materials at a jobsite
- Going to a sales appointment
- Attending an off-site work meeting
- Other work-related travel
How The Going And Coming Rule May Affect My Claim
The going and coming rule generally prohibits employees for receiving workers’ compensation benefits for an injury that happened when they were commuting to or from work. However, there may be exceptions, such as:
- Commuting in a company car
- Driving to multiple jobsites during a shift
- Stopping to pick up supplies on your way home
- You were on a business trip
- Traveling is major part of your job responsibility
- Your boss assigns you a special mission
Can I Sue The At-Fault Party If I File For Workers’ Compensation?
If another driver caused your accident, you may be able to file an insurance claim or sue the at-fault driver, in addition to filing your Ohio workers’ compensation claim. Filing a personal injury claim against the other party will not prevent you from filing a workers’ compensation claim or vice versa.
However, it is important to note the differences between a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver and a workers’ compensation claim filed with your employer’s insurance carrier.
A workers’ compensation claim does not require you to prove that your employer was responsible for your accident. You simply need to show your injury occurred in the course of your work. However, in a personal injury lawsuit, you will need to establish that the at-fault driver was negligent, and that his or her negligence caused the accident that resulted in your injuries.
Since workers’ compensation only replaces a portion of your wages while you are off work, there are some additional advantages to filing a claim against the at-fault party. You can pursue the full value of your lost wages and other damages, like pain and suffering, which are not covered by workers’ compensation benefits.
It is important to note that if you do receive workers’ compensation benefits, your employer or its workers’ compensation carrier may place a lien against a portion of the compensation you receive from the at-fault party, up to the amount of compensation that you received through workers’ compensation.
Contact A Trusted Lawyer For Help With Your Case
A workers’ compensation claim for a car accident injury could be complicated. The insurance company may deny your claim because it may appear that your injury was not work-related. The experienced attorneys at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy are well-versed in Ohio’s workers’ compensation laws and have helped many injured workers recover benefits.
We offer a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case, so you have nothing to risk by contacting one of our knowledgeable lawyers today.