Under Massachusetts law, if a person is injured in the course of his or her employment during an activity that arises out of his or her job, the person may be able to recover workers’ compensation benefits. Thus, if a person is injured traveling for his or her job, the person can file a workers’ compensation claim. Recently, the Appeals Court of Massachusetts, Suffolk, analyzed when traveling constitutes an act taken in furtherance of a business so as to warrant workers’ compensation benefits for injuries sustained during travel, in a case in which the court denied benefits to the estate of a worker who died while traveling. If you were injured while traveling for work, you should meet with a capable Massachusetts workers’ compensation attorney to discuss whether your employer may owe you workers’ compensation benefits.
Facts Regarding the Decedent’s Harm
It is alleged that the decedent, who was the principal of a family-owned business, died in a car accident in February 2014. The decedent’s widow subsequently filed a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. An administrative judge determined that the decedent was not killed during a trip that was undertaken in the furtherance of his company’s business and denied the decedent’s wife’s claim. The review board affirmed, after which the decedent’s wife appealed.
When Travel is a Work-Related Activity
The Massachusetts workers’ compensation acts covers injuries that arise out of work and occur in the course of work. Additionally, injuries suffered while traveling for the business affairs of an employer, that arise out of an ordinary risk of traveling are covered as well. In determining whether the risk of the trip was a personal risk or a risk of the employment, the court must assess whether the employment caused the employee to embark on the journey, or whether the trip was undertaken for other reasons. Continue reading →