The modern idea of the workplace is very different than it was 50 or even five years ago. Once upon a time, most people in Scranton who earned an income commuted from home to a warehouse, factory, office or other workplace.
These days, a big part of the workforce performs their duties at home. And then there are those who drive around for a living — delivery drivers, taxi and rideshare drivers, people who operate food trucks, and so on. Neither type of worker has a traditional workplace, but they work just as hard and are just as vulnerable to work-related injuries.
What does this mean for workers’ compensation claims? Are you ineligible for workers’ comp if you get hurt in a car accident on a Scranton street instead of an incident at a construction site?
Anywhere you are working, you can get hurt
As long as you are a qualified employee who was engaged in the course of your work duties when you got hurt, you are likely entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Thus, if you were in a crash while driving as part of your job, you most likely have a valid workers’ comp claim. You might also have a third-party claim against the other driver if they negligently caused the collision. However, commuting is generally not considered part of your work duties, so an accident on your way to or from work probably will not lead to workers’ comp benefits.
Nobody has to accept a rejected initial claim
You don’t give up your Pennsylvania workers’ compensation rights just because you don’t have a set, traditional workplace. But having a strong claim for benefits does not mean your employer and their workers’ comp insurer will treat you fairly. You have the right to appeal a rejected claim or one that does not adequately compensate you for lost wages and medical bills.