In its most basic definition, Workers’ Compensation in North Carolina is designed to provide coverage for North Carolina workers that are accidentally injured on the job. In doing this, Workers’ Compensation provides benefits that cover medical expenses and lose of wages. However, how does one determine what injuries suffered on the job are covered under Workers’ Compensation in North Carolina?
Workers’ Compensation Coverage
Generally, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation covers the majority of accidental injuries suffered on the job. Due to the nature of its design, Workers’ Compensation is a no-fault insurance plan that allows for benefits even for injuries caused by either the employer or employee. From this statement, it would seem that the bar is relatively low for what qualifies as a covered accidental injury. However, although this is true, there are some limitations on compensable injuries.
Injuries That Are Not Covered
In general, Workers’ Compensation will not cover the following situations:
- Injuries suffered while committing a crime;
- Injuries suffered while not working;
- Injuries suffered outside of the scope of employment;
- Injuries suffered due to employee’s violation of a company policy;
- Self-inflicted injuries (fighting, purposeful injury, etc.);
As it can be seen, there are a large amount of injuries that are not compensable under Workers’ Compensation. A careful examination reveals that they are mostly due to the intent of the injured party or lack of an accident. However, this does not mean that these types of injuries are always not compensable. Due to the nature of the legal system’s reliance on prior case law, the North Carolina court system has interpreted some situations differently, thus establishing precedent. As such, you should never immediately disregard a Workers’ Compensation claim just because it may fall in one of these enumerated categories.
If you or someone you know has been injured while at work, you should Contact Us for a free Workers’ Compensation consultation. By contacting an experienced Worker’s Compensation attorney, you will receive valuable legal advice and an experienced guide through the complex Worker’s Compensation process.
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James Minick is a criminal defense attorney in Asheville, NC and is the owner of Minick Law, P.C.