Although workers’ compensation is available nationwide for those injured at work, each state has unique laws that govern the proper filing of claims. Many of these laws look similar from state to state, but there are important differences that employees and employers should understand.
If this is your first time navigating the Maryland workers’ compensation system after suffering an injury at work, it serves your best interests to learn as much as possible. An ideal way to start is by deciphering the complex language contained in workers’ comp laws.
“Out of” and “in the course of” employment
The phrases above appear to say the same thing, but they are two separate terms critical to a successful claim. For an injury to arise “out of” employment, the injury must have occurred from exposure to the risks inherent to the position.
For example, a warehouse job that requires continual heavy lifting naturally poses the risk of occupational back injuries. If a worker hurts their back while performing their job requirements, it is compensable because it arose out of their employment.
The phrase “arising in the course of employment” has a somewhat different meaning. Rather than the job position requirements, this term focuses on when, where and how the injury occurred. So long as the injury occurred during a work shift, on a designated work site and is related to the job, it arose in the course of employment and is likely compensable.
The importance of understanding these terms
As you can see, workers’ compensation laws contain legalese that most injured workers might not immediately understand. Such language is necessary to define how the system functions per the law, but remember that legalese typically differs from region to region.
We urge you to learn more about Maryland workers’ compensation laws to ensure your claim provides you with the benefits you deserve after a work injury. An experienced attorney can help you understand the terms important to your situation and what to expect.