What Are My Options If I’m In A Car Accident While Working?
Most people couldn’t envision a scenario worse than wrecking a car while on the job. If you are in a car accident while working, whether in a personal or company vehicle, it can be complicated to figure out next steps and how to get the support and compensation that you need to recover. The best course of action depends on a number of factors that we will explore more below. Because these cases can be complicated, it is always a good idea to consult with an attorney. A Pennsylvania attorney who specializes in both workers’ compensation and personal injury law will be able to review your case for all possible avenues to compensation and determine the best path forward. Because there is a time limit on filing workers’ compensation claims, as well as a statute of limitations on personal injury claims, it is always best to seek legal counsel as soon as possible.
Workers’ Compensation for Car Accidents
There are a number of situations in which you may be eligible for workers’ compensation coverage if you are in a car accident while working. It’s important to note that in order to be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, you must be classified as an employee as opposed to a freelancer or independent contractor. In order to be eligible you must also have been working without the scope of your job duties at the time the accident occurred. This is true regardless of whether you were driving a personal or company vehicle. For instance, if you are a delivery person for Amazon (classified as an employee) and are involved in an accident while making deliveries, any injuries sustained or medical care required will be covered by workers’ compensation benefits because it occurred within the scope of your employment. However, if you were driving drunk or doing something entirely unrelated to work (such as drinking and joy riding in a company vehicle late at night after hours) then this would not likely be covered by workers’ compensation. If you are an independent contractor you are not able to get workers’ compensation benefits, but you can sue the party responsible for the accident, even if that party is your employer, provided they acted negligently in causing your injuries.
Suing for Work-Related Car Accidents
Workers’ compensation insurance provides benefits at the expense of preventing you from filing a personal injury lawsuit against your employer. However, if a third-party (who was not your employer) caused the accident, you are not barred from bringing a separate personal injury lawsuit against them. You can do this in addition to filing a workers’ compensation claim with your employer.
The Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at the O’Donnell Law Firm Can Help
Work-related car accidents can be complicated to navigate for a number of reasons, so it’s important to have an experienced legal advocate on your side. Schedule a free initial consultation with the personal injury attorneys at the O’Donnell Law Offices serving clients in Kingston, Wilkes Barre, Hazleton and Pittston at 570-821-5717 or online today. There is no fee or costs until we win your case.