Injured on Your Daily Commute to Work in Decatur? Here’s What You Need to Know About Georgia’s Commute Time Exemption to Workers’ Compensation Benefits
It is an unfortunate reality that workers in virtually every industry get hurt on the job every day in Decatur. From bakers in kitchens exposed to high temperatures and sharp objects, to office workers undergoing repetitive stress, to construction workers who must handle extremely heavy machinery, heights, and falling objects, Decatur workers, like all American workers, face hazards in the workplace every day that can lead to serious injury and disability. However, most Americans, and most Decatur workers, must also commute to work by car, bus, or on foot or bicycle, where the typical hazards of the road, such as drunk and distracted driving, hazardous road conditions, and the like, also put them at risk for serious injury. But are injuries that a Decatur worker sustains on their commute to work covered under Georgia workers’ compensation laws? Here’s what Decatur workers need to know:
Georgia Workers’ Compensation Benefits: Eligible for Most Workers for Injuries “Arising Out of or In the Course of Employment”
Most Decatur workers are eligible under Georgia workers’ compensation laws for workers’ compensation benefits if they are injured at work and are unable to perform their job. Workers’ compensation benefits are intended to cover injured workers’ expenses to help get them back on their feet. Georgia workers’ compensation benefits include things like medical cost reimbursement, wage replacement compensation, rehabilitation training, and other important benefits. Importantly, however, in order to be eligible for Georgia workers’ compensation benefits, the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation makes clear that Decatur workers must have had an “injury, illness or death arising out of and in the course of employment.” According to the Board, “[t]his means if employees are injured while performing assigned job duties during assigned work hours, they are covered under the workers’ compensation program. Injuries sustained while engaging in unassigned duties, during lunch and breaks, are not covered.” But what happens when a Decatur worker is injured on his or her commute? The Board states, “…injuries that occur during an employee’s normal commute to and from work are not covered.” In short, in order for a Decatur worker to be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, the covered injury must have occurred during the regular course of his or work. Commuting is not considered to be part of the scope of a workers’ work under Georgia workers’ compensation laws.
Help with Your Workers’ Compensation Claim in Decatur
If you have been injured on the job and Decatur and you have questions about your legal rights and entitlement to Georgia workers’ compensation benefits, get in touch with an experienced Decatur workers’ compensation lawyer as soon as possible. The experienced Decatur workers’ compensation lawyers at the O’Connell Law Firm offer a free and confidential consultation to learn about your workplace illness or injury and to see if they can help fight for you to get workers’ compensation benefits due. Contact the O’Connell Law firm today and speak to a lawyer about your rights and options for free.