Workers’ Compensation For Social Event Injuries
Social events are common in many different kinds of workplaces in Pennsylvania, from company picnics and sports leagues to holiday parties. In most cases, these social events occur after hours or on the weekends, and they are frequently optional for employees. If you suffered an injury at a workplace social event sponsored by your employer, are you eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim? This is a complicated question, and it is important to know that various states handle the answer to this question quite differently from one another. Some states are quite strict and handle the question in ways that favor the employer, looking at issues like whether the employee truly considered the event to be optional and whether the event provided a direct and obvious benefit to the employer. Other states are a bit more flexible, allowing injured employees to seek workers’ compensation benefits for injuries at social events when the social event provides any benefit to the employer.
Generally speaking, Pennsylvania tends to allow injured employees to obtain workers’ compensation benefits for injuries sustained at many kinds of workplace social events, but it is important to know that each claim is considered based on the specific facts of the case. Accordingly, you should learn more about what you will need to prove in order to be eligible for compensation.
Injuries Can Be Compensable When They Occur in the Course and Scope of Employment
The Pennsylvania workers’ compensation system considers injuries to be compensable when they arise out of a person’s employment, or when they occur in the course and scope of a person’s employment. What does it mean for an injury to occur in the scope of a person’s employment?
In general, if a worker is engaged in an activity that benefits the employer in some capacity, or that is required for work, then it is likely to be compensable. An injury does not have to occur in the office or at a jobsite to be compensable, and it does not have to happen while you are “on the clock.” As such, many workplace social event injuries can be compensable. Certainly, if you were required to attend the social event either explicitly or implicitly, then an injury that happened at the event will likely be compensable. Even if the event was optional, if the employer obtained a benefit from having employees at the event (such as improved workplace morale), then the injury could be compensable. You should have a lawyer assess your case to determine whether your injury is likely to be compensable.
Your Employer May Say the Injury Is Not Compensable, But You Should Talk to a Lawyer
Sometimes employers will inform employees that social event injuries are not compensable after an employee reports them. It is important to remember that your employer may not know if the injury is compensable, and an employer might say an injury is not compensable when you are, in fact, entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Regardless of whether your employer moves forward with the claim as if it is compensable, you should get help from an attorney since you could be eligible for benefits.
Seek Advice from an Experienced Harrisburg Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Do you have questions about seeking workers’ compensation benefits following an injury at a workplace social event, or do you need assistance proving that you are entitled to benefits? You should seek advice from one of the experienced Harrisburg workers’ compensation attorneys at Ira H. Weinstock, P.C. today.