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Combination Cases: What to Do If You’re Hurt on the Job While Driving

Atlanta workers' compensationIf you're hurt while driving a company vehicle or while traveling for work, you may be able to pursue a workers' compensation claim and a personal injury claim.

In Georgia, injured employees can file a claim for workers' compensation against the employer/insurer through the workers' compensation system. If a person is injured by another person's negligence (i.e. a distracted driver runs through a red light and causes a wreck), then a personal injury claim can be filed against the at-fault person's auto insurance company.

Our attorneys possess years of experience working with workers' compensation and personal injury cases. If you're seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident while working, we are able to handle both types of claims.

One of the benefits of pursuing a combination case is the ability to recover for your pain and suffering through your personal injury claim - something you cannot do in your workers' compensation claim, no matter how severe your injuries.

Injured in a Work Parking Lot (Ingress and Egress)

There has been a great deal of litigation over whether or not injuries that occur in the parking lot or on the premises of the employer are considered covered under workers' compensation.

As a general rule, when employees are coming into work or are leaving work on the grounds of the employer, the premises are considered a part of the employer's business which provides enough of the "work" connection to render the case covered under workers' compensation.

To be compensable, the accident does not necessarily have to occur after the employee is clocked in and ready to work. The law allows a reasonable time for ingress and egress while on the employer's premises.

Injured While Driving to or From Work

Accidents that happen while an employee is driving to and from work are generally not covered under the Workers' Compensation Act of Georgia. There are a few exceptions, including:

  1. Where the employer furnishes transportation to the employee for the mutual benefit of the employee and the employer in order to further the employee's work, the claim may be compensable; and
  2. Where the employee must be available to the employer and is "on call" and the employer provides transportation costs or reimbursement, an injury to or from work may be compensable.

Injured During a Mixed-Purpose Trip

If an employee is required to travel in their employment, there is usually enough of a connection to work that the claim will be considered to "arise out of and in the course and scope of employment" and make the claim compensable.

Questions about the compensability of the claim arise when there is a deviation from the employment by the employee for purely personal reasons. If an accident happens when the employee is on a personal deviation, then this is generally held to be a non-compensable accident.

However, once the employee is through with the detour or personal deviation and has resumed the duties of the employer, then the claim is typically considered compensable.

Experienced Workers' Compensation and Personal Injury Attorneys

For personal injury cases, we monitor your treatment, make sure you are getting appointments scheduled and negotiate on your behalf once the healing process is complete.

For workers' compensation, we ensure that you are receiving all of the benefits to which you are entitled throughout the life of the claim and ensure that any treatment recommended by the physician is authorized and carried out in a timely manner.

Combination cases can be difficult. But our team of attorneys and case managers is here to guide you through the bureaucratic pitfalls and help you recover both physically and financially.

Contact us at 770-934-8000 if you have any questions!

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