Going and Coming Rule (Traveling Employees)

Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Helping Chicago Employees Assert Their Right to Benefits

Workers’ compensation is a system of laws that affords injured workers the right to receive medical costs, wages, and rehabilitation for harm that they have suffered in the course and scope of employment. Illinois law makes clear that the injuries must be suffered on the job, and since this is a no-fault system of benefits, the injured employee need not prove fault for their injuries. At Katz, Friedman, Eagle, Eisenstein, Johnson & Bareck, our Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers understand the nuances of claims for benefits. For example, workers may find their claims challenged by insurance companies that seek to refute the notion that an injury was suffered at work, or “in the course of employment.” Our dedicated attorneys are prepared to aggressively fight back against these claims and assert that employees who have been traveling while working are entitled to compensation for their harm despite the application of the going and coming rule.

Application of the “Going and Coming Rule” for Traveling Employees

The “going and coming rule” is an exception to the general rule that workers are entitled to benefits for work-related injuries. According to this rule, employees will not recover benefits for harm suffered while commuting to or from work. However, to qualify for workers’ compensation, the work-related injury need not necessarily take place in the office. When employees are furthering the purpose of their business, for example, or performing a work-related task, they may be considered “on the job.”

According to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act (IWCA), employees injured while working are entitled to compensation for their harm. Each case requires a careful evaluation, since it may not be clear whether a worker was within the scope of employment. While on a lunch break, for example, some employees may still be eligible for benefits. If they were in the “zone of employment” or running errands for their employer, and they were injured during this period of time, they may recover benefits. In some cases, requests by an employer will be deemed a “special mission,” which entitles employees to benefits for the resulting injuries. Traveling between multiple job sites may also be considered job-related under Illinois workers’ compensation laws.

The going and coming rule is applied differently in each workers’ compensation case, and specific factors will be considered to evaluate whether an employee is eligible for workers’ compensation. For those employees who travel, the going and coming rule may entail assessing their conduct at the time of the accident. For example, if work-related travel is essential to the employee’s regular duties, the going and coming rule may be more leniently applied to a car accident on the job. Examples of traveling employees include bus drivers, pilots, and truck drivers. However, if at the time of the injury, the employee was running a personal errand, they probably will be determined to have been outside the zone of employment and therefore would not be eligible for benefits.

Secure Representation for Your Claim from an Experienced Chicago Attorney

The dedicated attorneys at Katz, Friedman, Eagle, Eisenstein, Johnson & Bareck represent workers in a variety of industries, ranging from airline employees to health care workers, who have been injured in the scope and course of their employment. Our familiarity with Illinois workers’ compensation laws has helped our Chicago lawyers recover compensation and benefits for individuals who may have suffered harm outside the office, while still engaging in a work-related activity. Traveling employees are entitled to compensation for their harm, and while their case may require a more complex evaluation, we are prepared to fully advocate for their right to benefits. It may not be immediately evident whether an injury will be deemed “work-related,” but by scheduling a free consultation with a skilled job injury lawyer in our office, you can better understand your legal rights and obligations. Workers in the Chicago area, as well as those residing in Aurora, Springfield, Champaign, Rockford, Quincy, and other cities in Cook, Winnebago, Kane, and Adams Counties, have received assistance from our dedicated attorneys. Call our office at (800) 444-1525 or reach us online to set up a free appointment and discuss the details of your claim.