What You Need to Show to Recover Compensation for a Workplace Injury
As a general rule, when you have suffered an injury and want to pursue compensation for your losses, you need to establish that another person or entity “caused” the accident, either through carelessness, recklessness or an intentional act. Does that same rule apply when you apply for work comp benefits after a job-related injury? No.
Workers’ Compensation as a “No-Fault” Claim
In New Jersey, as in all states, workers’ compensation claims are handled on what is essentially a “no-fault” basis. There are only two requirements to qualify for workers’ compensation benefits: you must show that you suffered an injury, and you must prove that the injury occurred while you were “on the job.”
Situations Where an Injury May or May Not Be Job-Related
There are a number of common instances where an injury may or may not have occurred in the course of employment:
- Where you are injured while on a break—Most injuries sustained while on a regular break, including lunch, will be covered, unless you leave the premises of your employer. Even then, if you perform any work-related task while you are away from work, you may still qualify.
- When traveling for work—You cannot recover for any injuries sustained on your commute to or from work, unless you were injured while on a work-related detour. Most injuries sustained when traveling for your job are covered, unless you were engaged in a wholly personal activity, such as working out at a gym while attending a work conference.
- Where you are injured at a company social event—Whether attendance is voluntary or not, you’ll typically be covered.
- If the injury occurs as a result of horseplay or violation of known company policies
As a general rule, you cannot recover workers’ compensation benefits for intentionally self-inflicted injuries.
Contact the Law Office of Howard D. Popper
At the Law Offices of Howard D. Popper, we can help protect your rights. For a free initial consultation to discuss your options after any type of personal injury, contact our office online or call 973-993-8787 to set up an appointment. We have offices in Morristown and Newton.
We handle all personal injury claims on a contingent fee basis. You won’t pay any attorney fees unless we recover damages for your losses.