Employees injured while performing work-related duties in Virginia are usually entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. However, not all affected individuals file for these benefits. Widespread misconceptions about workers’ compensation dissuade many from pursuing benefits.
Therefore, it helps to have the correct information in case you suffer a workplace accident to ensure you protect your interests. Below are some common myths about Virginia’s workers’ compensation system.
You can be fired for making a claim
Your employer cannot legally dismiss you for claiming workers’ compensation benefits. It’s unlawful for your employer to let you go or retaliate against you solely because you filed a claim.
Your accident must have happened on the job
The location of your accident does not matter as long as you are performing your work duties. You may still have a valid claim if you were injured on the road or away from your physical workplace while performing a job-related activity.
You must be a full-time employee to file a claim
You do not have to be working full-time to enjoy workers’ compensation benefits. Part-time workers are covered, too. However, you cannot file a claim if you are an independent contractor.
You cannot recover benefits if you are at fault
Fault is not generally a factor in workers’ compensation claims. You can still obtain benefits if you contribute to your workplace accident. There are some exceptions, though, such as self-inflicted injuries or if you blatantly ignored safety measures.
Protect your interests after a workplace accident
It helps to have the proper guidance after a workplace accident. This can help you understand how things work and what you need to do.