When workers suffer injury on the job, they usually expect that the employer will cover the medical costs and lost income through a workers' compensation claim. This remains true in most instances when workers are on a business trip and suffer an injury.
Business trips are interesting areas, legally speaking. Practically, they almost always blur the lines between work and personal life, and often involve activities that are frowned upon in a typical office scenario, like drinking alcohol.
For this reason, when a car accident occurs on a business trip, the matter of liability can get complicated. In many instances, the accident does qualify for workers' compensation, but not always.
If you recently experienced a business trip car accident, your employer may push back on your workers' compensation claim. An experienced attorney can help you examine the accident and the contributing factors to determine how to protect your rights and pursue fair compensation for your injuries, allowing you to focus on your recovery.
What is vicarious liability?
Vicarious liability is a legal principle that states employers are generally responsible for the actions of an employee when the employee is acting within the scope of his or her employment. This may include negligent action or mistakes, but does not always cover malicious or illegal acts. In instances where a car accident occurs on company time, the details of the accident impact liability significantly.
An employer probably bears responsibility for injuries and damages if an employee is rear-ended while on a business trip, for instance, or even if the employee causes an accident through negligence, such as running a stop sign. In some cases, the employer may even bear responsibility for the injuries and damages of other parties.
However, an employer is generally not liable in instances where an employee experiences a car accident while breaking the law. Commonly, business trips can complicate this because they involve drinking during a business dinner or social gathering. If an employee drives after drinking on a business trip and experiences a car accident, the employee may bear the liability because of his or her individual choice to drink and drive.
Get the clarity you need to move forward
If you recently suffered an injury from a car accident on a business trip, you need to focus on your physical recovery. If you do not receive proper medical treatment as soon as possible, your injuries may get worse, complicating a future injury claim. If you have any questions about your accident and how to seek fair compensation, an experienced attorney can guide you through the process and help keep your rights protected.