If you were injured while on a break from the working day, you may be wondering if you are still entitled to workers' compensation benefits. The good news is certain breaks, such as a typical lunch break or a coffee break, are deemed as part of the daily goings and comings of the work routine. If there is a connection between the sustained injury and the place of employment, you may be eligible for compensation.
To help determine if your injury is compensable, it is necessary to analyze a few factors. First, the injured party must be employed at the time of injury. In other words, workers' compensation is only available during the time of work and thus you must have been injured while working.
Next, we must look at where the injury took place. If the injury took place on the premises of employment, it is generally covered by workers' compensation, even if the injury occurred during a break period. On the other hand, if the injury took place off of the property, it is necessary that there be a work-related connection to the location where the injury took place.
Further, the injury generally must be a result of a task related to your employment. In many cases, this is broadly construed. It does not need to be a task directly related to your job description, it can be virtually anything as long as it is work related in some way.
As you can imagine, real-life scenarios of work related injuries may not be so cut and dry and thus are unlikely to fit nicely into the aforementioned factors. There are many intricacies to the workers' compensation system and you should never try to handle your claim without an experienced workers' compensation attorney. Fortunately, it never costs an injured worker anything to hire a workers' compensation attorney. Workers' compensation attorneys are paid by the employer's workers' compensation insurer. Thus, if you are hurt at work, be sure to contact an attorney right away to be sure you are receiving the benefits you are entitled to.