Are Injuries on Commute or in Parking Lot Covered?
When employees are injured on the job, they are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, but not if the accident occurs on their commute to or from work — in most cases, at least.
But how about if an employee is injured in your parking lot, or while running an errand for you after work? There are two rules that govern at which point a worker is eligible for benefits if they sustain an injury:
The ‘coming and going’ rule
Typically, workers’ comp benefits won’t be paid for injuries sustained during a daily commute. This is known as the “coming and going” rule.
Exceptions consider whether the worker’s travel was a benefit to the employer, and related to their job duties. There are four main exceptions:
- No fixed work site — The employee travels to multiple job sites. If a worker travels to multiple sites in one day and gets injured en route even to the first one, injuries would typically be compensable.
- Off-site work — This could include if the employee is injured while on a business trip. The worker is deemed to be acting in the scope of his or her employment the whole time while away on business, even at the hotel.
- Special assignment — If during their regular commute the employee also is performing a special errand or “mission” for their employer.
- Traveling worker — When an employee must travel in order to accomplish their job duties, the coming and going rule does not apply.
The ‘premises’ rule
If an employee is injured on the premises of your place of employment, they are more or less “at work” and should qualify for benefits.
Premises are not limited to areas owned or leased by the employer, and include areas under their control.
Various courts have held that employment starts when an employee arrives at a parking lot owned, maintained or used by the employer.
A recent case dealt with these issues. A worker was injured while driving to work inside an Air Force base, where his private military contractor employer operated multiple worksites. He was on the base, but still 3 to 5 miles away from his worksite.
A California appellate court ruled that he was eligible for benefits under the workers’ comp premises rule.
This and other cases show that there are off-site dangers to workers that employers cannot account for, particularly on public roads.
Still, other dangers on your premises — think icy walkways — can be minimized with proper risk management, by alerting your landlord (if you rent) if there are such dangers, or having it fixed if you own the property.
BGES Group’s office, located in Larchmont, NY is a full service insurance agency offering, Property, Liability, Umbrella Liability, Business Auto, Bid & Performance Bonds, Inland Marine, Worker’s Compensation, New York State Disability, Group Health, Life insurance, Personal lines and Identity Theft.
Special Contractor Insurance Programs (NY, NJ, CT) – We we have 50+ insurance companies to market your general liability, umbrella liability, business auto, workers compensation, bid & performance bonds and group health coverages. We help contractors set up proper risk transfer. If you’re a contractor we offer extensive information about insurance markets, coverages, risk transfer, subcontractor screening, ways to lower your insurance costs.
BGES Group are Worker’s Compensation Specialists for the States of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut – Issues we address: 1) Lowering pricing – we have specialty programs that can save you up to 40%; 2) Finding a new company; 3) Replacing policies that are being cancelled or non renewed; 4) Audit disputes; 5) Company creating fictitious payroll at audit time; 6) Lowering high experience modifications factors; 7) Misclassification of payrolls; 8) Lowering or eliminating renewal deposits; 9) Getting coverage when you’ve been without for a few months; 10) Covering multiple states under one policy; 11) Eliminating 10% service or policy fees; 12) Timely issuance of certificates; 13) Always being able to get someone on the phone or by email when you need to.
Company: BGES Group, 216A Larchmont Acres West, Larchmont, NY 10538
© – Copyright – 2021 – BGES Group