Am I Eligible To File A Workers’ Compensation Claim?
Workers’ compensation is an insurance program required under state law. It provides payment to employees that suffer work-related injuries or illnesses on the job. Employees that qualify can receive compensation for medical bills and lost wages regardless of who was at fault, but they also forfeit the right to sue their employers for the accident.
While this is an excellent benefit, it only applies to those who are eligible for it. But how do you know if you are eligible for workers’ compensation? With hundreds of successful cases and decades of experience handling workers’ compensation claims, Meshbesher Law Firm knows how to prove liability and obtain results.
Basic Eligibility Requirements
Typically, there are three basic rules of eligibility for workers’ compensation:
- The person or company that employs you must carry workers’ compensation insurance, something required of all employers in Minnesota.
- You must be a documented employee of the company.
- Your injury must have been work-related.
There are some special exceptions to the basic rules for agricultural workers, undocumented workers and loaned employees, such as those through temp agencies.
- Agricultural workers – If you are employed in a mass-producing factory farm that supplies livestock or produce to major companies, you are still entitled to a workers’ compensation claim. However, if you are working on what the law classifies as a family farm, they are not under an obligation to have the insurance.
- Loaned workers – If you are loaned out through a temp agency or any other leasing program, Minnesota statutes have declared that if you are hurt on the job, it is the responsibility of the directing party to allow you to file a workers’ compensation claim, not the temp agency itself.
- Undocumented workers – While other states, particularly in the Southwest, take extra measures to insure undocumented workers, Minnesota does not. You must be a “qualified” employee, which means a citizen of the United States and on the employer’s records.
When Am I Not Eligible For Workers’ Compensation?
There are times when you are not eligible for workers’ compensation, and the most obvious one is when you are not at work. This includes doing a work-related task while not getting paid for it or not on the premises. You are also not eligible if you get into an accident, such as a car accident, while traveling to and from work.
Another major issue that will prevent eligibility is if your employer does not have the insurance. Minnesota requires all employers to carry this insurance, so you still have options available to you if your employer does not. In these cases, you are more than eligible to sue them for damages, and you also have an option to receive compensation from Minnesota’s special fund used to compensate workers with irresponsible and uninsured employers.
While all those are fairly obvious reasons making you ineligible, there is one thing that you can do to make yourself ineligible for workers’ compensation. If you were impaired by drugs or alcohol during the on-the-job accident, those injuries are not covered.
Finally, if you have a preexisting injury, your employer may try to ardently argue against workers’ compensation. You are still eligible for compensation if you can prove that work has greatly aggravated the condition, but it will be a hard battle.
Were You Injured At Work? We Can Help
Have you or someone you know suffered an injury at work and found the workers’ compensation process daunting and difficult? You shouldn’t have to go through the incomprehensible paperwork alone, we can help.