Workers injured in San Jose, California, or another nearby city should know what the workers’ compensation program covers. As to the nature of the injury, the program can cover physical injuries, including those caused by repetitive motions like carpal tunnel syndrome; work-related illnesses like hearing loss and sunstroke; and mental conditions like PTSD.
Only work-related injuries covered
It should go without saying that only occupational injuries and illnesses can qualify one for workers’ compensation benefits. So, for example, you won’t be compensated if you get in a crash while commuting to and from your job in a private vehicle. However, you may receive benefits if you were injured while running a work-related errand in a private vehicle.
Perhaps one is injured at a social gathering with coworkers. If it was unsponsored and one went voluntarily, then those injuries cannot be covered. In addition, injuries incurred during a lunch break spent away from the job site won’t qualify.
Negligence can bar recovery
You’ll find that filing a workers’ compensation claim is easier than filing a personal injury claim. For one thing, you won’t need to prove that you were the victim of the employer’s, or anyone else’s, negligence. Nevertheless, your employer could deny benefits if your negligence caused the accident.
Workers who are injured while under the influence of drugs or alcohol are disqualified, as are those who sustain injuries because they were fighting or misbehaving. Of course, one has the option of filing an appeal should benefits be denied the first time around.
Personal attention from a lawyer
Perhaps you’re not sure if your injuries can be covered by workers’ comp. Admittedly, it can be hard to prove that some injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, were solely due to work conditions and not due, at least in part, to other circumstances. This can complicate the filing process.
A lawyer may guide you through that process, though, and relieve the stress you’re feeling. He or she may assist with any appeals, too, and discuss the pros and cons of opting for a lump-sum settlement.