Can You File a Claim for Post-Termination Injuries?
More than 50,000 people suffered nonfatal injuries or illnesses on the job in Missouri in a recent year. Workplace injuries are common and can happen in many ways, no matter what type of job you have. Workers’ compensation benefits should cover your medical expenses and a portion of your lost wages following a job-related injury or illness. However, what happens if you are injured after getting terminated from your job?
Exceptions to the Rule
Generally speaking, you are not covered by workers’ compensation if you are no longer employed. As with most laws, however, there are exceptions that might qualify you for coverage, even if you were informed of your termination. Some of these scenarios might include the following:
- Your employer notifies you that you will be terminated, but you are finishing your shift or the week before your employment officially ends. If your injury happens post-notification, but while you are still working, you should be covered by workers’ compensation.
- You are visiting a worksite or on a business-related trip for work when you learn you are terminated, and your injury happens before you finish your trip home.
- You are fired, and then, while leaving the building or walking to your car, you suffer an injury in a slip and fall or another type of accident. If you have not left the premises, your injury might be covered by workers’ compensation.
Coverage for injuries post-termination is determined on a case-by-case basis, and your eligibility will depend on the specific facts of what happened, including how and when your injury occurred. It is best to discuss the matter with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer immediately after getting medical treatment for your injuries.
Possible Legal Options
Even if you are not eligible for workers’ compensation coverage due to your termination, there might be other options to seek financial compensation for your injury-related losses. For example, if you are driving home after getting fired, and another driver crashes into your car, you should be able to file an insurance claim against that driver. If you return to your workplace a few days later to pick up something you forgot, and you slip and fall on a wet and slippery floor, your former employer might be liable for your losses in a premises liability claim. You should discuss all possible options with an attorney who can advise you of the best way to seek compensation for your medical bills and other losses.
Contact a Missouri Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Help
At the law firm of Morrison, Webster & Carlton, we know that many workers’ compensation claims are not as straightforward as they should be. We can help with complex cases involving unique circumstances, and we can advise you of the best path to obtain the benefits you deserve. You can call our Springfield office at 417-890-4600 or our Joplin office at 417-781-5690, or you can contact us online to set up your free case evaluation today.