As COVID-19, also known as the novel coronavirus, continues to impact more and more people across the United States, many people are wracking their minds for the source of their infection. And because the likeliest source of exposure for most people is work, it’s only natural to wonder if any expenses or damages related to the illness are eligible to be covered by workers’ compensation. The answer is a bit complicated and depends upon the facts unique to your case. An experienced personal injury and workers’ compensation attorney in Massachusetts can help.
Let’s look at some factors to keep in mind when determining whether you have a potential workers’ compensation case.
When and where were you infected?
The first thing that must be proven in a workers’ compensation case is that you encountered the virus while acting with the scope of your employment. This means that merely falling ill with COVID-19 isn’t enough to guarantee you workers’ compensation. Instead, you must be able to prove that the infection was directly related to your job.
Note that this does not mean that you must have been infected while at your office, but rather while performing an activity or task for work. This includes traveling to and from work, visiting a client, or even visiting the store to pick up supplies for your job. If you were doing something necessary for your job when you were exposed to the virus, then you might have a workers’ compensation claim and should speak with a workers’ compensation lawyer.
It’s also important to note that if you became ill while at work, you might very well have a claim. This can include anything from talking to someone in the hall to unknowingly touching a surface that had the virus on it.
Some might claim that the business itself wasn’t at fault for the infection, especially before it was a common issue. The important thing to keep in mind in these cases is that it doesn’t matter whether your employer was directly at fault or not – becoming infected at work is generally enough to allow you to collect workers’ compensation. That’s because, as a knowledgeable workers’ comp attorney in Massachusetts can tell you, the workers’ compensation system is a “no-fault” one. That means that even if your employer wasn’t at fault, you could still be entitled to payments because you were injured at work.
For more information about workers’ compensation and COVID-19 in Massachusetts, reach out to Attorney George Malonis, today! (978) 453-4500.