In a general sense, workers’ compensation is designed to provide you with replacement wages and money to cover the cost of medical bills after you get hurt on the job. It’s just a way for the company to acknowledge that some workers will become injured and will still need to make ends meet while they recover, along with allowing them not to worry as much about dangerous occupations since they won’t have to cover the cost of treatment they need.
However, not all accidents happen through the fault of the company. While there are cases where workers aren’t given proper protective equipment, for instance, there are also cases where workers refuse to use the equipment or make a mistake and use it improperly. In short, that worker causes the accident which then causes their injury.
Yes, the injury happened at work, but does fault matter? If you get hurt, can your company get out of paying workers’ comp because they blame you?
As long as it’s work-related, fault doesn’t matter
Fault actually does not play a role in the modern workers’ comp system. If someone is doing their job and they get hurt, it doesn’t matter if they caused it, a co-worker caused it, a supervisor caused it or the company itself was responsible. They are still covered.
The only times when fault matters are when you’re making a third-party personal injury claim that goes beyond workers’ comp. The third party would then need to be shown to be at fault in some way — by making a defective machine, for instance. But the worker still cannot be denied payment if he or she was at fault.
Of course, workers can have compensation denied for things like getting injured at home. But, in a case like that, the crucial information is where and how the injury happened, not who caused it.
Do you know your rights?
It’s so important to know your rights as a worker. If you get hurt on the job, you must know what steps to take to seek the compensation you deserve.