If you are in an accident in a company vehicle, there’s a definite possibility that the incident may be covered by your employer’s Oklahoma workers’ compensation coverage.
Benefits of Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation:
Oklahoma employees who suffer injuries while working receive benefits from workers’ compensation programs. The benefits are intended to cover the costs associated with workplace injuries, so employees do not suffer financial hardship due to an injury or illness they sustained while on the job. Injured employees must file a claim for workers’ compensation to receive workers’ compensation benefits. However, the ability to file a claim for workers’ compensation for a car accident at work or an accident in a company vehicle depends heavily on the details.
Is My accident in a company vehicle Covered Under Workers Compensation?
If you are in a car accident and believe your injury should be covered under your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance, speak with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to determine if you have an eligible Oklahoma workers’ compensation claim. If you do not qualify to file a workers’ compensation claim, you may have other legal recourse available, such as a personal injury claim. Speaking to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you determine your best option based on the details of the accident and your injury.
Workers’ Compensation is a No-Fault System:
Generally speaking, workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, but there are a few exceptions to the standard. Under the no-fault system, an individual who sustains an injury at work can receive compensation for their injuries even if they caused the accident that caused the injury themself. This no-fault system means that injured parties are more likely to recover when filing a workers’ compensation claim because they do not need to prove that another party’s negligence caused the incident resulting in the injury. However, the compensation is typically higher when an injured party successfully files a personal injury claim.
Car Accident Driving to Work: Workers’ Compensation or Personal Injury?
If you are injured during a car accident while driving to/from work, workers’ compensation probably doesn’t apply. In this situation, it’s often best to file a personal injury claim against the other driver in the accident.
Drivers Who Sustain Injuries on the Job: Workers’ Compensation or Personal Injury?
The scenario changes if you drive as part of your job. If your job requires you to drive to complete daily tasks, you may be able to recover compensation for your car accident injury by filing a workers’ compensation claim. For example, if you make deliveries for your employer, driving is an everyday job task and could make a car accident injury a valid workers’ compensation claim. In this type of situation, you may be able to file a successful workers’ comp claim to obtain compensation for your injuries even if you were at fault for the car accident. However, an otherwise eligible workers’ compensation claim for a car accident injury may be denied under certain circumstances. One common exception occurs when an employee is under the influence of drugs or alcohol during a car accident or if the driver failed to follow their employer’s standard safety procedures. These instances may put your workers’ compensation claim in danger of being denied.
Does a Workers’ Compensation Claim Prevent a Personal Injury Claim?
In some cases, both a workers’ compensation claim and a personal injury claim may seem like valid options. If you are in a car accident and you file a third-party personal injury liability claim, you may still be able to file a workers’ compensation claim. Filing both a personal injury claim and a workers’ comp claim following a car accident injury would only apply in a very limited number of cases, but doing so would allow the injured worker to depend on the higher probability of compensation from the workers’ comp claim while also seeking the higher compensation amount possible with the personal injury claim. For instance, personal injury claims can seek pain and suffering damages, while workers’ compensation claims do not offer the same coverage.
Complexities of Car Accidents on the Job:
If you are injured in a car accident and you aren’t sure if your situation qualifies you for workers’ compensation or if you should consider filing a personal injury claim, don’t hesitate to reach out for legal help. Deadlines associated with on-the-job and personal injuries vary and can come quickly – especially when dealing with an injury.
If you are injured in a car accident in a company vehicle and have questions about how to seek compensation for your injury, get in touch with Armstrong & Vaught, PLC, Premier Workers’ Compensation, Employment, and Social Security Law Firm. We are devoted to providing excellent legal services to clients from all walks of life. Contact us online or call (918) 582-2500 to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.