When you get hurt at work, worker’s compensation is available to compensate you for your lost wages and medical bills. However, there are some instances where your claim will be denied. The following are some of the most common situations involving worker’s compensation claims, and whether you will be covered under Las Vegas laws.
On the Job
In order to receive these benefits, your injury has to occur while you are on the job. This is an important stipulation that can have a serious impact on your ability to collect benefits. For example, if you are clocked out for lunch and get injured while getting your food, your claim will likely be denied. However, the circumstances surrounding your injury may allow it to be covered – if you were grabbing something for a supervisor as well, or you slipped and fell in the cafeteria, your claim may be covered.
In Las Vegas, you can’t file a worker’s compensation claim if you are involved in an accident that causes injury on your way to or from work. Your daily commute has nothing to do with your actual job requirements. This may change if you are driving a company-owned vehicle, or if you are heading to a meeting that is off-site. Additionally, if you don’t have a set job location, such as occurs with some sales positions, your injuries are likely covered. If you are sent out to run an errand and an injury occurs, you’ll be covered. But, if you were making a side trip or including your own personal agenda in the trip when the injury occurs, you won’t be covered.
If you were playing around, or breaking any of the safety rules enforced in the workplace, your injuries may still be covered under Las Vegas laws. If your boss was aware of what you were doing, and did not stop you from doing so, your injuries will be covered. If you were injured due to intoxication or drug use on the job, don’t expect to claim worker’s compensation, though – illegal activities causing an accident or injury aren’t typically covered.
Another important consideration is whether you are required to take a drug test after injury. Under the current statutes that apply to Las Vegas worker’s compensation claims, benefits don’t require testing. However, if your employer has a written policy that explains that benefits will not be provided if the screening shows drugs or alcohol in your system, it trumps the lack of statutes, and can be a reason for your claim to be denied.
If you fake an injury or illness that you claim occurred on the job, your claim will be denied due to fraud. This will also come into play if you are discovered to be taking part in activities that are against doctor’s orders. Both of these situations will result in either the claim being denied, or termination of benefits.
If you believe that your claim was denied unfairly, you should always contact a Las Vegas worker’s compensation attorney. He or she will go over your case, and help you determine whether you should file an appeal.