Construction worker on the ground

Can I Be Denied Workers' Compensation If My Injury Was Partially My Fault?

Workers' compensation is a form of insurance designed to provide benefits to employees who suffer job-related injuries or illnesses. One of the cornerstone principles of this system is its no-fault nature. This means that, generally, an employee is entitled to receive benefits regardless of who is at fault for the injury. Whether it was a result of an employer's oversight, a co-worker's mistake, or even the employee's own error, workers' compensation is structured to cover medical expenses and lost wages without the need for lengthy litigation.

Comparative Fault and Workers' Compensation

While workers' compensation is fundamentally a no-fault system, the concept of comparative fault does come into play in certain situations. Comparative fault refers to the allocation of blame among the parties involved in an incident. In most workers' compensation cases, this concept is not a factor, as benefits are provided without regard to fault. However, there are exceptional circumstances where an employee's conduct could be so egregious that it might limit or exclude them from receiving benefits. For example, if an injury is sustained while an employee is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or if they were violating company policy, their claim might be impacted. It's important to understand that these are rare exceptions and the vast majority of workers' compensation claims are processed without considering the comparative fault.

Eligibility Criteria for Workers' Compensation

To qualify for workers' compensation benefits, there are several basic criteria an employee must meet. First and foremost, the claimant must be an employee of the company, as independent contractors and volunteers are typically not covered under workers' compensation statutes. Secondly, the injury or illness must have occurred in the course and scope of employment, meaning it must be related to the work the employee was hired to do. Furthermore, the claim must be filed within the state-mandated time frame, which varies from state to state. Meeting these requirements is usually sufficient to establish eligibility for workers' compensation benefits, ensuring that employees have a safety net in the event of a workplace injury.

If you're feeling overwhelmed by the claims process or if your claim has been unfairly denied, Pothitakis Law Firm is here to help. Contact us today to discuss your case and explore your options for a successful resolution.