What if I am at Fault for My Work Injury?
June 7, 2019
In Pennsylvania, most workers who become injured or ill on the job are entitled to a form of financial protection called workers’ compensation. These benefits cover the costs of medical care and lost income while the injured worker is temporarily or permanently unable to perform their job duties.
While workers’ compensation generally covers most on-the-job injuries, there are some circumstances where it may not apply. Let us look at some of the reasons why injuries may not be covered by workers’ compensation.
Fault and Workers’ Compensation
Workers who accidentally cause their injuries during the course of their regular job duties are most likely eligible for workers’ comp benefits. For example, if a cafeteria worker accidentally leaves the burner on during lunch service and suffers serious burns as a result, they can file a claim with their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance provider.
Technically the worker’s mistake or “fault” caused them to be hurt. Yet because the accident occurred while the worker was performing their job, it is considered a work-related injury covered by workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania.
Injuries Not Covered by Workers’ Compensation
If the injured worker left the burner on while she was preparing her own meal or after scheduled work hours, her accident did not occur during the course of her regular work duties and may not be covered by workers’ compensation. There are some other scenarios that fall outside of the workers’ compensation umbrella.
Work accident injuries and illness may not be covered by workers’ compensation if:
- They are intentional or self-inflicted
- They are the result of impairment by drugs or alcohol
- They are the result of “horseplay” or reckless behavior
- They are the result of physical violence related to a personal matter
- They are the result of illegal acts
- They occur during the commute to or from work
Every individual’s illness, injuries, and claim are unique. While we have highlighted certain scenarios where extenuating circumstances may invalidate a claim, it is important to note there are exceptions to every situation.
If you do bear some fault for your injuries, you may still have other options to pursue damages besides workers’ compensation. It is always best to consult with a qualified attorney knowledgeable about work injuries and accidents.
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Attorneys at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Handle Complex Workplace Accident Claims
After taking the time and attention required to evaluate every detail of your work injury and how it happened, your Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. will recommend the best course of action to recover financial compensation for your losses. If you suspect your injuries fall under some of the excluded situations in the Philadelphia workers’ compensation system, we will clarify your rights as a worker in Pennsylvania. A free case review is the first step. Call 888-PITT-LAW or contact us online to schedule yours today.
With several offices located in the Philadelphia area, our team provides skilled representation to those residing in and around Pennsylvania, including those in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester, and Wynnewood.