An employer can avoid paying workers’ compensation if the accident is caused by a person other than an employee. In such a situation, they will have to prove that they were not negligent in any manner related to the injury. However, this is not an easy feat because many people still believe that if an employee causes their injury or harm, they are entitled to compensation earned before and after the incident.
5 Situations Where an Employer Can Avoid Paying Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ compensation is insurance that covers the cost of medical bills and lost wages when an employee is injured on the job. Workers are entitled to these benefits if they are injured on the job, regardless of fault.
However, there are situations where it can be avoided in favor of their monetary gain, and they include:
1. Self-Inflicted Injury
Self-inflicted injury is a type of occupational disease that occurs due to a worker’s negligence and is to blame for their injury. These can also be called on-the-job injuries caused by work-related accidents or employees habitually damaging themselves while performing their job duties. It is important to note that employees will not receive any benefits if they inflict harm on themselves through neglect rather than willful activity.
2. Intoxication from Drugs or Alcohol
Employers can avoid paying compensation if there is no substantial performance impairment because of the ingested drug or alcohol. It is not considered something in addition to an elevated blood alcohol concentration. Before the accident, it was evident that the employee’s mental or physical condition would make drinking risky.
3. Reckless Behavior
If an employee hurts another person or property while acting recklessly, the employer can avoid paying the workers’ compensation. This is true even if the employee was not trying to injure himself. For example, suppose someone was seriously injured by a worker who was making too much noise or committing other illegal acts on the job. In that case, the employer should consider whether it is reckless for them to keep working.
4. Idiopathic Medical Condition
The idiopathic medical condition is the most common type of workplace injury. A worker who suffers an injury due to a preexisting medical condition could not recover workers’ compensation benefits from their employer if they were knowingly exposed to the hazard of the job that caused their injury.
5. An Injury that is Not Work Related
If an injury happened away from the workplace, such as a car accident, that injury would not be work-related. Similarly, suppose an employer has workers’ compensation coverage for injuries to a worker while off the job but still injured because of work-related activities at home. In that case, that injury is also not related to their employment.
There are a variety of situations in which an employer may be able to avoid paying workers’ compensation benefits. Things can always change in the future, and no case is entirely cut-and-dried. There’s no harm in letting your employer know about the circumstances surrounding your injury and your expectations for workers’ compensation payouts. However, sometimes, an employer might refuse to compensate even though you suffered an injury in the workplace. In such cases, hire a lawyer and file a lawsuit against the employer for your workplace accident.