Determining if you are eligible to receive workers’ compensation for your injuries can be complicated depending on your situation. Most of the time, injuries sustained while at the workplace will be covered, but employers and insurance companies will do whatever it takes to deny your benefits. Consulting with an experienced workers’ comp attorney can help determine if your injury qualifies for benefits and how much you can expect to receive.
Workers’ Comp Eligibility Checklist
To determine whether you are eligible for workers’ comp benefits in the state of Massachusetts, you must meet the following three criteria:
1. You were injured on-the-job, or your illness was work-related.
You will most likely be covered by workers’ compensation insurance if your injury or illness was work-related or happened while on-the-job. Repetitive stress injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, exposure to hazardous chemicals, and trips, slips, falls, or vehicle accidents are normally covered. However, there can be grey areas, such as if you were injured in a car accident while picking up lunch for your boss, or if you were injured at a company picnic. It’s best to consult with a workers’ comp lawyer to go over the details of your specific case to determine if your injury was work-related or not.
2. Your employer has workers’ compensation insurance as required by law.
Massachusetts’s law requires all employers to have workers’ compensation insurance, regardless of the number of hours their employees work per week. This includes employees who are family members and the employer himself if he is also an employee. If your employer tells you that he or she does not have workers’ compensation insurance, speak with an attorney right away to go over your options.
3. You were an employee
Under certain workers’ compensation conditions, you may not be considered an “employee.” For example, independent contractors, such as freelance writers or computer consultants, may not receive workers’ comp benefits. In the state of Massachusetts, other workers who are NOT eligible for workers’ comp include:
- Seamen engaged in interstate or foreign commerce
- Professional athletes
- Real estate agents paid by commission
- Salespeople paid by the number of sales
- Taxi drivers working as independent contractors
- Domestic workers, such as babysitters, working less than 16 hours per week
Contact a Massachusetts Workers’ Comp Attorney
At Powers & Caccavale, you will have the advantage of receiving a legal strategy tailored to your specific circumstances and an experienced lawyer advocating on your behalf throughout every stage of the workers’ comp process. Sometimes, employers and insurance companies will say that you’re not classed as an “employee” to avoid having to pay you benefits. Because we are familiar with these kinds of circumstances, we know how to fight back and win your case. Contact us today for a free case evaluation or call us at (617) 379-0016.