All kinds of injuries and illnesses may prevent or limit us from doing our jobs, but whether you are entitled to benefits available under New Mexico’s workers’ compensation program is in part determined by how, when and where you suffered your injury. If you break your legs in a car accident while on a family road trip, or trip over one of your kids’ toys in your living room and throw out your back, you may be out of work for a while, but your potential remedies and sources of compensation lay elsewhere.
Workers’ compensation covers injuries or illness that “arise out of and occur in the course and scope of employment.” Often, it is pretty clear that your injury is work-related. If you are working on the factory floor and a machine malfunctions and injures you, that is a work-related injury covered by workers’ compensation. So too are the very common injuries sustained over time like repetitive stress injuries so long as they are caused by work-related activities.
Work-related injuries are not limited to those sustained in the office or in the factory. So much of our work today includes work from remote locations and/or requires travel, and if you are driving to see a client or attend a meeting, or are at an off-site work function, any injuries sustained during those times should be covered by workers’ compensation. It should be noted, however, that injuries sustained while commuting to and from your home to work are generally not covered.
Workers’ compensation is designed to be a “no fault” system so that injured employees do not need to assert or prove that their employer’s negligence caused the injury. However, “no fault” does not give employees free reign to engage in activities on the job that are clearly irresponsible and dangerous and then receive workers’ compensation for injuries sustained as a result of such conduct. If you sustained a work injury while you were intoxicated or one that occurred because you were engaging in horseplay or a disregard of safety rules and instructions, it is very likely that you will not be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
There are an almost unlimited number of ways in which we can get injured on the job, and the places where our work may find us are numerous as well. The circumstances of your particular injury will determine whether you are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits or not. If you believe you have suffered an injury that arose out of or occurred during the course of your employment, but your employer or its insurance carrier has denied your claim for workers’ compensation benefits because they assert that your injury was not work related, contact an experienced New Mexico workers’ compensation attorney who can help you get the benefits you deserve.
The Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Brown: Fighting for New Mexico Workers
I know how hard you work, and I’ll work just as hard for you. Call the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Brown today at (505) 275-6600 or fill out my online form to arrange for your free initial consultation to discuss your workers’ compensation matter. I look forward to helping you get back on your feet, and back to work.
This website has been prepared by the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Brown for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.