If you are hurt while on the job, you can make a claim for compensation. If you are an employee, you may be able to seek workers’ compensation. If you are not an employee, then you may need to file a personal injury claim instead.
There are differences between these two kinds of cases. Here is what you should know if you get hurt.
Workers’ compensation claims
Workers’ compensation claims are made by employees. At hiring, employees often receive information about workers’ compensation and how to file a claim if they get hurt on the job. Unlike freelancers or independent contractors, those working as employees usually have a right to workers’ compensation by law.
Most employers are required to have workers’ compensation insurance coverage for their employees.
Personal injury claims
Workplace personal injury claims typically are used by non-employees who are injured at work. They may be independent contractors or freelancers working for a company, for example, but are not considered employees.
When people are not employees, they do not have the option of pursuing workers’ compensation. Similarly, if an employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance when they should, employees may have to pursue a personal injury claim.
Employees may also have to make personal injury claims rather than workers’ compensation claims if they are hurt at work but not performing work-related duties at the time of the injury.
Another personal injury scenario is when a worker is injured on the job not by the employer but by a “third party.” For example, an employee is driving a company vehicle for work and is struck by a negligent driver.
Fault also plays a role in these claims. Personal injury claims require you to prove fault, but workers’ compensation claims do not.
Get more information
The differences between these two kinds of claims are significant, which is why it is necessary to know your rights and to make the right kind of claim after an injury. To understand the benefits available through workers’ compensation, contact an attorney who is experienced in workers’ comp law.