If you’ve been injured while working, you might be eligible for Maryland workers’ compensation. However, the laws in Maryland concerning eligibility are different than they are in other states. Keep reading to find out the requirements needed for your injury to be covered.
Compensable injuries are injuries that are eligible for compensation. According to Maryland law, the injury “must arise from a specific traumatic event that arises out of and is in the course of employment.” In addition to meeting this definition, the injury also has to fulfill three requirements:
• The injury had to occur due to an accident, except in the case of hernias
• The injury had to occur while you were performing job duties required by your position
• The injury had to occur while you were at the location at which you were to be working
Severity of the Injury
The overall severity of the injury that you suffer also determines your eligibility for workers’ compensation. Generally, the injury must require first aid treatment from a medical professional. To be clear, if you were able to treat a wound or injury on your own, with bandages or materials that were readily available in the first-aid kit hanging on the wall in the break room, you will not be eligible for benefits.
Occupational illnesses, such as repetitive use and some respiratory diseases are also covered under workers’ compensation. In order for the condition to be eligible, it has to occur over time, and be harmful in nature. Some of the most common illnesses that are covered include conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, or diseases and conditions that are caused by breathing in harmful fumes or substances. The disease also has to be proven as resulting from employment, rather than simply being aggravated by your employment.
Maryland laws also provide compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder, providing there is evidence available that proves the condition resulted from performing duties required by your position.
If you are required to work at other locations as a part of your job, any injuries that meet the above requirements may still be eligible. If the injury occurred while you were carrying out assigned work, at the location given by the employer, it will be covered under workers’ compensation in Maryland. Additionally, if your injury occurs while driving to or from a meeting with a client, it will likely be covered as well.
Some injuries are not covered under the workers’ compensation laws. If the injury is due to self-harm or self-infliction, there were drugs or alcohol involved at the time of the accident, or if you were taking part in willful misconduct, it will not be covered. Also, if the injury could have been avoided by following prescribed or required safety measures, such as wearing PPE, it won’t be covered either.
If you feel that your injury falls within the parameters of the Maryland workers’ compensation laws, and your claim was denied, you should consider contacting a lawyer to assist with your appeals process.