Despite the many laws and safety measures in place to reduce the risks, driving a motor vehicle is an inherently risky activity. Anyone on the road could be harmed by a negligent driver and suffer serious injuries as a result. When driving is a regular part of an employee’s job duties, that employee is frequently exposed to the risk of harm. In fact, according to 2019 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, transportation incidents are the leading cause of fatal work injuries and the fourth leading cause of nonfatal work injuries.
Workers who are injured in motor vehicle accidents are often left with many questions. Are they entitled to workers’ compensation benefits? Can they file a personal injury claim against the negligent party? Often, both are possible, but it is important to work with an experienced attorney who understands the best course of action depending on the situation.
Workers’ Compensation Claims for Injured Drivers
In Illinois, workers’ compensation benefits are available to employees who are injured in the course of their work. Many occupations involve driving on an almost daily basis, including:
Commercial truck drivers
Package delivery drivers
Food delivery drivers
When any of these employees are injured in a motor vehicle accident while performing their job duties, workers’ compensation benefits are likely to apply. Workers’ compensation may even be available for employees who are injured in a car accident while running a work-related errand for their employer.
After a work-related car accident, injured employees will need to notify their employer as soon as possible and file a claim for benefits. Available benefits may include compensation for all relevant medical expenses, as well as temporary or permanent disability benefits for two-thirds of the employee’s lost wages.
Compensation From Negligent Drivers
Workers’ compensation is often available for work-related car accident injuries even if there is no evidence of negligence. However, if the accident was caused by a negligent driver or another negligent party, additional compensation may be available through a personal injury claim. This is known as a third-party claim, since compensation is sought from someone other than the injured worker’s employer.
If an injured worker files both a workers’ comp claim and a third-party personal injury claim, it is important to note that the same damages cannot be recovered twice. However, a personal injury claim can seek damages that are not available through workers’ comp, including non-economic pain and suffering damages and further compensation for lost wages.
Contact a Bensenville Work Injury Attorney
If you were injured while driving for work, the experienced Cook County workers’ compensation lawyers at [[title]] can help you identify all available sources of compensation and represent you in your claims. Call us today at [[phone]] to schedule a free initial consultation.