If you have suffered a work-related injury or illness in Massachusetts, one of the biggest concerns you may have is whether you qualify for workers’ compensation. According to The General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, most employers in the state must provide workers’ compensation insurance to employees to cover their medical treatment and other expenses after being injured at work. Your line of work will determine whether your employer is required to provide this coverage. For example, if you work in a domestic service job you are not eligible for workers’ compensation if you work fewer than 16 hours per week.
To receive workers’ compensation benefits, you will need to prove that your injury occurred while on the job. If, for instance, you were struck by a falling object while working on a construction site and sustained a brain injury, this would qualify for workers’ compensation. If you were in a car accident while off the job site, but had been running a work-related errand for your employer, it could also count as an on-the-job accident.
Symptoms that show up after several years on the job, such as carpal tunnel syndrome or an asbestos-related illness, may be covered by workers’ compensation if it can be proven that these conditions occurred as a result of your employment. You would need to provide documentation that you worked at a job that commonly results in these types of injuries, such as a computer job for carpal tunnel syndrome or at construction sites where you were repeatedly exposed to asbestos.
Not all work-related injuries are covered by workers’ compensation. People who fall under the following factors would not generally be considered eligible for benefits:
- Self-inflicted injuries
- Injuries that occurred while you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Accidents that occurred while you were breaking the law or violating company policies
- Injuries that did not occur while you were at work
This information can help you understand your rights regarding workers’ compensation, but should not be taken as legal advice.