Car Accident While Working in Georgia
Workers who suffer injuries while performing job duties within the scope of their employment are eligible to file a worker’s compensation claim under Georgia law. This includes those involved in a car accident while working in Georgia. But in many cases, workers can recover damages from a third-party claim in addition to filing for workers’ compensation benefits.
Workers’ Compensation for a Car Accident on the Job
Workers’ compensation is available to injured workers regardless of who caused the injuries and accident. So even if an employee who was operating a vehicle within the scope of her employment caused the wreck, she would still qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.
Further, workers’ compensation laws generally prevent injured workers from suing their employers, even if the employer was negligent and caused the wreck. So even if an employer required the employee to operate a vehicle that was defective, required she drive when she was fatigued, or required her to drive in dangerous weather conditions, the employee generally cannot sue the employer.
Scope of Employment & Workers’ Compensation
Under Georgia law, an employer can successfully defend against a workers’ compensation claim by showing that – at the time of the incident – the worker was engaged in activities that were not within the “scope of employment.”
For example, an employer may argue that the employee was driving to or from work at the time of the accident, and thus the employer is not liable because these are not specific work activities. Or the employer may argue the employee was driving to lunch and not performing work-related activities.
In every case, liability hinges on whether the employee’s activities were clear and unambiguous employment tasks, or rather “purely personal reasons entirely disconnected from [the company] business.” (Travis Pruitt & Associates, P.C. v. Hooper) In the latter case, an employer can actually avoid responsibility for the injuries, and the injured party will need to find an alternative route to recovery.
Third-Party Liability Claims for Auto Accidents on the Job
In addition to workers’ compensation, workers may be able to file a third-party claim against another driver who caused the auto accident. This would be in addition to a workers’ compensation claim. We can help you reconcile how the two claims would affect each other.
But unlike workers’ compensation, this requires proving that a particular party was at fault. And this requires evidence that proves negligence and liability like any other car accident claim. Let us help you explore your eligibility to file a third-party claim in addition to collecting workers’ compensation benefits.
Contact a Georgia Auto Accident Attorney Today
When it comes to workplace injury, there is more to consider beyond a workers’ compensation claim. In many cases, a third-party action is warranted as well – which can help offset some of the financial damages not covered by the workers’ compensation statute.
For help with your claim, contact the Law Offices of John Morrison today: 770-951-8900.