What if I get hurt at work during a storm?

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Workers comp benefits after injuries in a storm

As Hurricane Florence approaches you may be asking yourself "what are my rights to workers' compensation if I have to work during a hurricane?" I'm happy to be able to give you a simple answer: they are the same during a hurricane as they are normally.

What many people don't know is that employment law and workers' compensation law are actually two distinctly different areas of law. You may be wondering whether or not your employer can legally require you to be at work during a hurricane. While that is a great question, it doesn't have any bearing on whether or not you are eligible to receive workers' compensation if you are hurt at work. All that is required for eligibility in workers' compensation is to be injured "in the course and scope of your employment." That can be at work, off-site, or driving to and from work. 

Whether or not you are required to be at work during a hurricane is a matter or your employment relationship. If you are an emergency worker and it has been written into your contract that you have to stay, that contract is probably binding but would still need to stay long the lines of reasonableness according to OSHA. Last year in Hurricane Irma some medical staff in Florida were required to stay and staff the hospitals.There are of course OSHA laws governing safe conditions for employment which would go into effect during a hurricane.

If you are required to be at work during a hurricane or other type of emergency, you should definitely know your rights because you have an increased chance of being hurt at work. Order our signature book "Protect Your Rights, the Ultimate Guide to DC Workers' Compensation," today - don't spend one more minute being unsure of your rights. This could be the difference between you having a successful workers' comp claim, and being tripped up by the insurance company and screwing up your case beyond repair. Most people don't know how to ask for their rights to be met, because they don't know what their rights are.

Call us today at 202-393-3320, because we want to hear your story. You will speak with a real person today, just give us a call. 

Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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Experienced DC Workers' Comp, Long Term Disability & Accident Lawyer