If you have an accident in your own car while working, you may wonder if you will qualify for workers’ compensation. Fortunately, just because you drove your own car usually will not disqualify you from receiving benefits.
Workers’ Compensation and Driving
In Minnesota, you can receive workers’ compensation for an injury that arises from and occurs in the course of your employment. This legal requirement means that:
- You must have been working or doing a work-related task while you were driving your car.
- Commute time does not count, with a few exceptions for particular professions.
- You usually cannot have been running a personal errand, even if it was during work hours.
For example, you might get in an accident while shopping for office supplies that your boss requested that you purchase. Or you might be travelling away from your office to another location, such as a client office or supplier warehouse. If you drive as a key part of your job duties, then you might be travelling to make sales calls or dropping off a passenger. Accidents during any of these situations could lead to workers’ compensation claims.
Which Workers’ Comp Benefits Can You Receive?
If you were in an accident in your personal car, you are probably wondering which workers’ compensation benefits you can receive. First, note that the workers’ comp will not reimburse you for damage to your vehicle in the accident. You should check with your car insurance provider and your employer instead.
Second, note that in Minnesota independent contractors cannot receive workers’ comp. Many contractors, however, are improperly classified and qualify as employees under the law. All employees – even if part-time or seasonal – may receive benefits.
If you are an employee, you potentially can receive several different kinds of benefits, including payment of medical expenses, wage loss benefits, and even vocational benefits. Any time you have to take off work due to injuries could lead to wage loss benefits, which partially replace money you lose by not working. The other benefits also make up for your losses due to a car accident, even if in your personal car.
Need help getting workers’ compensation for your injury? Joe Osterbauer, Esq. and the Osterbauer Law Firm stand up for injured Minnesota workers’ rights. Joe’s 27 years of workers’ compensation experience and his team’s speedy service combine to get clients the results they need. To schedule a free consultation, visit Osterbauer Law Firm online or call Joe’s office at (612) 334-3434.