Accidents happen, even at work. If you sustained an injury while performing your job duties, you might be wondering if you are still entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if you were either partly or completely to blame for the accident that resulted in your injuries. The short answer to this question is, yes, you can still receive workers’ compensation benefits even if the injuries you suffered were your fault. The workers’ compensation system is not based in fault, so regardless if the worker or the employer were at fault for the accident’s occurrence, the employee will be able to secure these important benefits.
That said, there are some exceptions to this rule, so it is important to fully understand how the system works.
Why Do Injured Workers Who Are Responsible for Their Own Injuries Still Get Benefits?
The reason why the workers’ compensation is not a fault-based system is due to the fact that employees can only recover a limited amount of damages in a workers’ compensation claim. Unlike a personal injury claim, for example, an injured employee cannot be compensated for pain and suffering. Workers’ compensation is designed to provide medical treatment and a portion of lost wages when an employee sustains injuries so that he or she can take time to recover before returning to work.
When Fault Matters in a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Generally, fault does not matter in a workers’ compensation claim, but in some cases, certain actions can ultimately result in a denial of these benefits. In order for an injured worker to be denied workers’ compensation benefits, he or she would have had to engage in willful misconduct. This can include drinking or doing drugs while performing job duties, or purposefully injuring one’s self, the latter of which is considered workers’ compensation fraud and is illegal. Moreover, an employer would be able to terminate your employment with them if you caused your own injury on purpose.
Experienced Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Cobb County
If you sustained an injury while performing your job duties, you need to act quickly and obtain skilled legal representation as soon as possible to ensure you are able to secure these crucial benefits. At Chestnut & Beller in Cobb County, our team of workers’ compensation attorneys is backed by nearly 60 years of combined legal experience and a proven track record of success.