Under New Jersey law, workers have workers’ compensation claims for injuries that occur while they are on the job. Depending on the nature of the job, this may mean that they are at a physical place of employment (such as a factory or office) or that they are traveling around in furtherance of their job, (such as for an employee who is a truck driver).
One issue that often arises in the workers’ compensation context is whether injuries are covered when they are related to work but don’t actually occur in the performance of work itself. A common example is in the case of injuries that occur in the workplace parking lot – whether going to or from work. While these types of injuries may not occur when an employee is performing his or her job duties, they can be covered under workers’ compensation laws if basic requirements are met.
Getting Coverage for a Parking Lot Injury in Cape May Court House
If you are an employee who was injured as a result of an accident that occurred in the parking lot of your employer, you may be able to get workers’ compensation for your claim if you meet several key requirements. The first of these requirements is that your injury must have been reasonably related to your performance of work.
What this typically means is that your injury must have occurred at a time reasonably close to when you were working. If your accident happened while you were parking to arrive at work or when you were getting in your car to go home after a shift, this should not be an issue. It may be more challenging, however, if you left your car in the parking lot to go out to dinner with friends and were injured after coming back from dinner.
What workers’ compensation insurers and employers want to know is that your injury or accident was within a close enough time proximity to your work that it could reasonably be considered work-related.
Who Had Control?
The second – and most important – requirement that a worker must meet is to show that the employer had control or direction over the parking lot. At some offices, an employer may have a parking lot dedicated solely to their employees that they clean, protect, and control. In other situations, employees may use a public parking lot to park for work or share a parking lot with other tenants. In these situations, the employer may not have control over the status of the lot.
When an employer controls the lot itself or specifically directs employees to park in that lot, the employer can usually be held responsible for injuries that occur on the lot. If, however, employees are simply parking in lots that are available to anyone and that have no particular tie to their employer, it unlikely that the employer would have responsibility over the accident.
This can also apply to entering and exiting a for shared office building. If an employer in a multi-tenant building directs an employee to use a certain method of going in and out of a building, or if there is only one way in or out of a building, then injuries that occur while walking in and out of the building could covered through workers ’ compensation. However, if employees are free to choose the route in and out of the building, or there are multiple entrances and exits to choose from, it would be unlikely that the employer would have responsibility over the accident.
As the above requirements make clear, getting workers’ compensation coverage for a parking lot slip and fall is possible in New Jersey but it is more complicated than obtaining compensation for an injury that occurs on the job. When in doubt, employees should always consult with an attorney to determine whether workers’ compensation coverage applies in their situation.
New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Fighting for Every Claim
At Petro Cohen Petro Matarazzo, our attorneys believe that every employee is entitled to workers’ compensation for injuries that occur while on the job. We understand the sacrifices that employees make for their jobs and their employers, and we fight for the rights of employees to receive the benefits they deserve when they are injured along the way.
If you were injured as a result of a fall or accident that occurred on your way to or from work and you are unsure of whether it is covered by New Jersey’s workers’ compensation laws, we can assist you. We will evaluate your accident, where it occurred, and let you know what you may be able to do to get support for your injury.
Some of the exceptional legal services we will provide you include the following:
- Timely and complete filing of required documents with your employer, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development – Workers’ Compensation Division, the court, etc.
- Assistance in obtaining authorization for medical treatment.
- Assistance with the Independent Medical Exam (IME) process.
- Direct communication with your employer and workers’ comp insurance company.
- Obtaining all necessary medical bills and records.
- Conducting necessary legal and factual research specific to your case.
- Representation at all hearings before the Department of Labor.
- The handling of any necessary appeals.
It’s important to note that Petro Cohen Petro Matarazzo has been consistently recognized as one of New Jersey’s leading firms in the area of workers’ comp. The firm received the highest rating by Martindale-Hubbell – the world’s foremost authority on law firm credentials – in Professional Excellence and Ethical Standards and Legal Ability. And for the past nine years, Petro Cohen has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers® in the “Best Law Firms” rankings. For 2019, the firm was listed regionally for Workers’ Compensation Law. Firms included in the 2019 “Best Law Firms” list are recognized for professional excellence with persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers. Achieving a tiered ranking signals a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise.
For more information or to schedule a free consultation at one of our four offices in southern New Jersey (Cape May Court House, Northfield, Hamilton, and Cherry Hill), contact us online or by phone at (888) 675-7607.