Workplace Injuries & Traveling Salespeople
Even if a person spends more time out on the road for work than they do in a fixed space like a traditional office, that doesn’t necessarily mean that workplace safety isn’t a problem. Working away from an office can come with some unique safety factors that people might not encounter when working in a more traditional setting. And if you’re injured while traveling for work, whether or not you can get workers compensation benefits can be confusing in some situations.
When people need to travel for part of their job, that tends to mean spending a lot of time driving, whether it’s following a set route to visit customers/clients or going to and from places like airports and train stations. The more time a person spends driving, the more likely it becomes that they will get into an accident at some point. Especially if their job involves driving at night or early in the morning when visibility is low and people may be feeling fatigued.
There can also be more opportunities for drivers to be distracted while driving for work. For example, they may feel pressured to answer work-related phone calls while driving. Or if they’re driving through areas they aren’t familiar with, they may feel the need to check or readjust their GPS system while driving.
One of the biggest safety issues traveling salespeople encounter is the simple fact that they often work by themselves. If a salesperson is traveling through a high-crime area, being alone can make them a target for robberies and assault. It also means that a person doesn’t have someone else who can help them in an emergency situation. For example, if a salesperson working alone is injured in a car accident, they don’t have someone with them who could possibly be able to get help for them right away.
Workers Compensation While Traveling for Work
If you’re injured while traveling for work, the fact that you were on the road doesn’t necessarily mean you’re out of luck when it comes to making a workers compensation claim. Very often, people are eligible for workers compensation benefits even if they were away from a fixed workplace (such as an office, warehouse, etc.) at the time of the injury. However, these claims can be complicated depending what, exactly, you were doing at the time of the injury. For example, were you driving to see a customer or making a side trip to visit a friend while in the area for work? If you were doing something within the scope of your job which benefits the employer at the time of your injury, you likely will be eligible for workers compensation.
Contact a Michigan Workplace Injury Lawyer
If you’ve been injured on the job, contact a workplace injury lawyer as soon as possible. When your job involves a lot of traveling and you were injured while traveling as part of your job, it’s important to make sure you have a lawyer who can help make sure you get all of the compensation you need and deserve. At Goodwin & Scieszka, you’ll be able to get help from a lawyer experienced in helping people who have been injured on the job. Contact us today to get started.
Image: iStock / Montypeter