If you are one of those workers that spend nearly as much time on the road as you do in the office, you may find yourself unsure of what steps to take if you're injured outside the office. The question of whether or not workers' comp coverage applies to your injury depends of the exact circumstances of the injury, but if you qualify for coverage you can expect to have all of your medical benefits covered and a portion of your salary paid to you while you stay at home and heal from your injury. To learn a bit more, read on.
What should be covered: In most cases, you can expect your employer's workers' comp insurance to cover you for the entire duration of your trip, from the time you walk out your door until you return back to your home. For example, if you trip and fall down while loading luggage into your car for your trip that morning, you are covered. If you get bonked on the head by a convention display board, you are covered.
What coverage might mean: In addition to the medical expense coverage and a portion of your salary, you may also be entitled to a lump sum payout if your injury leads to a permanent disability. Since you may never be well enough to work again, be sure to obtain the services of workers' comp attorney to negotiate the award for you. It needs to be sufficient to last you your lifetime.
What may not be covered: Tacking on a few days of vacation at the end of your business trip is common and very convenient. After all, you are already there, and your transportation costs are already covered by your employer. If you get hurt during this time period, however, it is extremely unlikely that you can get workers' comp coverage.
Filing your workers' comp claim: Since workers' comp is not a federal program but a state-run program, the rules and procedures vary according to the location. In most instances, a phone call to your direct supervisor will get the ball rolling on your claim, but you may also be able to access claim forms on your own state's workers' comp web site.
Seek medical help. No matter what, your injury must be bad enough for you to seek medical treatment for it. Make sure that you let the physician know that your injury is work related, since the doctor's notes and the billing codes are different for these types of injuries.
To learn more, speak to attorneys through firms like Gilbert, Blaszcyk & Milburn LLP.