Under California statute, employees who are hurt at work may be eligible for financial restitution for the resulting damages through the employer-sponsored workers’ compensation program. However, things can get tricky if you are hurt away from work.
California’s “Going and Coming” rule outlines what happens to workers who are hurt away from their regular workplaces. According to this rule, injuries that are sustained out of work may only be eligible for compensation under a certain set of circumstances.
The injury must arise out of your work
For a work-related injury to be eligible for compensation in California, it must happen within the scope and course of employment. In other words, the injury must arise out of employment, and this is not the same as saying the injury “happened at work.” Generally, you must meet any of the following conditions to be eligible for workers’ compensation in California:
- You must have sustained your injuries while performing work-specific duties
- You must have sustained your injuries while performing tasks assigned by your employer
- You must have sustained the injuries at a secondary work location like the organization’s branch office
- You must have sustained the injuries during the regular working hours as provided for by your contract
If your injuries meet any of the following conditions, you may be eligible for compensation. However, this is never a guarantee. You must fulfill other requirements like reporting the injury to your employer, following through with your treatment plan and filing your claim within the statute of limitations period.
However, if you are hurt while traveling to or from work, you may not be eligible for compensation as your injuries do not meet any of the conditions stated above unless you were engaged in a special mission or errand as per your employer’s direction.
Workplace injuries happen when they are least expected. Knowing your legal options is crucial for pursuing compensation if you are hurt at work.