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Can you get work comp if you cause a car crash while on the job?

Imagine you are a package delivery driver. You’re on the road again after just dropping off a package. You look down at your computer for a split second to determine which delivery is next in line. In that instant, you run a stop sign and crash into another driver. You are seriously injured. Almost immediately after the shock wears off, you start to worry about your medical bills and your lost wages. Since the crash is technically your fault, you’re concerned that you can’t collect workers’ compensation benefits to help cover your expenses.

Thankfully, the Maryland workers’ compensation system is no-fault. Unless you were intoxicated or otherwise under the influence, if you were injured on the job, you’re generally eligible.

There are some scenarios in which on-the-job car accidents aren’t covered (with narrow exceptions), like during your commute to work in the morning, but there are also several situations where motor vehicle accidents would qualify for benefits:

  • Delivering packages as part of your job duties
  • Running errands for your boss (even if this isn’t part of your regular job duties, if your boss or manager requested you to be on the road, your injuries are likely compensable)
  • Driving to another work site (if you are, for example, a service technician who makes on-site repairs, moving from one location to the next should be covered)
  • Transporting fellow employees for “work-related purposes” such as an off-site client meeting
  • Being on the road in a mobile office (sales people, for example, often use their vehicles as a mobile office to conduct business while out and about)
  • Participating in employer-compensated travel

If you have questions about whether or not a car accident qualifies you for work comp benefits, seek legal advice as soon as possible after your injuries occur. 

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