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Can You Get Worker's Comp for Getting Hurt on Vacation?

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By Daniel Taylor, Esq. on December 04, 2014 10:38 AM

Worker's compensation provides benefits to workers who are injured, even if they are injured away from the job site. But does worker's compensation kick in if a person is injured while on vacation?

One Australian woman successfully filed a claim for worker's compensation after suffering an injury while having sex in her hotel room. In that case however, the woman was on a business trip. And U.S. worker's compensation rules aren't necessarily the same as those of Australia.

So what about injuries suffered on a vacation?

Injuries Must Be Work-Related

To be eligible for worker's compensation benefits, a worker must suffer an injury that is work-related. Although these injuries are typically suffered at an employee's workplace, an injury does not necessarily have to occur at work to be work-related. For example, accidents that occur while driving in a company or personal vehicle while running a job-related errand may be considered work-related, as might injuries sustained at a company-sponsored event such as a Christmas party.

An injury sustained during personal travel will generally not be considered work-related. This not only includes traveling for vacation, but also traveling to and from work for workers with a fixed place of employment. But what about injuries sustained during business travel?

Worker's Compensation for Travel Injuries

Injuries that occur during work-related travel may be covered by worker's compensation. Although laws vary by state, generally, if an employee is traveling for a business purpose, injuries relating to an employee's job duties are considered work-related.

More questionable, however, would be injuries sustained while on a business trip but engaging in non-business activity, such as eating in a restaurant or going sightseeing. In that case, a worker's compensation attorney would be able to review the facts of your injury and advise you on the likelihood of being covered by worker's compensation.

Learn more about filing a claim and receiving worker's compensation benefits at FindLaw's Learn About the Law page on Worker's Compensation Basics.

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