The entire point of the workers’ compensation system is to ensure that injured workers receive all of the benefits that they’re entitled to under California workers’ compensation or workman’s’ comp law. However, the law requires that an injured employee actually be in the course of employment when he or she is injured in order to be eligible for benefits.
Generally speaking, if you’re injured on your commute to and from work, an injured person is not entitled to workman’s comp benefits. The idea behind the rule is that an employer should not be liable for an injury of a worker if they’re not actually working when they were injured.
This general rule is known as the “Going and Coming Rule”.
That said, there are many exceptions to this rule and you should speak to an attorney to determine if you might be eligible for benefits despite the fact you think you were on your commute to or from work.
For example: If an injured worker works at multiple locations as part of their job and he or she is injured in route from one location to another, that injured employee might be eligible for workman’s comp benefits.
In another example, if an employer requires the employer to have their own transportation to as part of their work requirements, an injury during the morning commute may be covered by workman’s compensation insurance.
In addition, if an employee was injured on a short trip to the store, and offers to bring back refreshments or treats for other coworkers, that injured worker may be covered by the “personal comfort doctrine” and entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.
Please note that every case is different and that you should consult with an attorney to see if your particular situation makes you eligible for benefits. Each case is different and must be examined accordingly. If you have suffered and injury that you believe is work-related please do not hesitate to contact our offices so that we may guide you through the process.