Workers Comp and Employee Use of Motor Vehicles

Written by on 11/29/2017 1:26 AM in , , . It has 2 Comments.

Employees injured on the jobsite expect workers’ comp insurance coverage. But what about when employees are injured in an automobile? Here, work comp management can quickly become confusing.

Workers’ Comp Coverage Hinges on the Circumstances of the Collision
Vehicles are increasingly taking to the roadways, many used for work-related use. Here, the legal doctrine of respondeat superior applies. If employees are “acting within the scope of their employment,” employers may be legally responsible their actions, including injuries and property damage resulting from an employee driving a company vehicle.

What Situations May Be Covered?

- Employees making deliveries.
- Work-related errands.
- Transporting a fellow employee for work purposes.
- Driving to and from site jobs.
- Travel in which the employee is compensated by the employer.
- Using the company vehicle to accomplish other job duties.

What if an Employee Causes an At-Fault Accident
If the employee was driving a company vehicle, respondeat superior again applies. A no-fault insurance, he/she is still awarded workers’ comp benefits. Your business is also responsible for third-party injuries and property damage under civil claims. Employer liability insurance additionally protects the employee from third party actions/suits.

What Situations are Typically Not Covered?
A broad generalization, variances in state law and individual circumstances can toss a wrench in the works of coverage. Generally not covered:

- Employees on their own time, such as travel to/from work or on lunch break.
- Employees stopping for a personal errand at the time of incident.
- The employee committed a crime or was under the influence of drugs/alcohol at the time of the accident.

Don’t let work comp management woes pile-up. Get the help you need with Minnesota Comp Advisor today.


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