Last week, a Philadelphia judge ruled that a U.S. Airways flight attendant is entitled to workers’ compensation coverage for her injury on an airport shuttle bus. This latest court ruling caused many employment analysts to call into question when the workday starts and ends, especially since the flight attendant’s injury occurred after she’d ended her shift for the day and was en route back to her car.
The flight attendant had reportedly just completed a round-trip flight between Philadelphia and Miami in the hours before her injuring incident occurred. Her car was parked in an airport employee parking lot. She’d boarded a shuttle in hopes of being transported there.
According to court filings in the case, the flight attendant was in the process of trying to stow away her suitcase onto an overhead luggage rack when she slipped on a puddle. She lost her footing and fell backward. Her left foot was crushed in the process.
Court filings show that the woman filed a workers’ compensation claim for her disabling injury. She also requested temporary disability funds to cover her as she recovered for three months. She returned to work soon thereafter.
U.S. Airways declined to pay her claim as they argued that she wasn’t injured on the job. The plaintiff’s union, the Association of Flight Attendants, maintained that the woman still been working at the time she was injured.
The union noted that there was an agreement between them and U.S. Airways that required her employer to provide reimbursed or free parking for their flight attendants, so she was still on the job when the incident occurred.
A workers’ compensation judge, a Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court judge and Pennsylvania Supreme Court justices all decided in favor of the flight attendant as the case moved through the legal system on appeal.
Workers are injured at work every day. While many employees are successful in getting their employers to pay their medical costs, many are not. Many employers fail to pay on the argument that a worker’s injuries didn’t happen on the job.
If you’ve been hurt at work, and you can’t get your employer to pay for your medical costs and lost wages, then you may want to consult with a workplace injury attorney. Your Dauphin lawyer can advise you of legal remedies that you may be able to pursue to get your employer to pay what they owe you.