Your Legal Options if in a Car Accident While Working in Texas
If you sustain injuries in a car accident while working in Texas, you may be eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim. However, workers’ compensation does not cover everything; if the accident was not your fault, you may be eligible to file a third-party injury claim.
When does the law consider you to be driving for work?If you are "on the clock" and receiving payment for the time you are driving, you are likely driving for work. This means people who drive for a living such as truckers or delivery drivers are eligible for workers' compensation after an accident while driving for their job.
If you do not drive for a living, but travel for work purposes and are doing so at the time of your accident you may able to file a workers' compensation claim. This includes driving to a meeting outside your office, running for supplies for your workplace, or transporting another employee for a work-related situation.
If you are just starting or ending your workday and you are in a car accident during that trip, your employer's workers' compensation coverage will likely not cover the accident. However, if while on the way to or from work, your employer asked you to pick up office supplies or drop off paperwork to a client, you may be able to claim that you were driving for work purposes when the crash occurred.
Filing Two Types of Legal ClaimsIf you were able to prove that you were driving for work purposes at the time of the accident, you can file a workers' compensation claim with your employer. However, if the other driver caused the accident, you have the right to file a civil or "third-party" claim against that driver and his insurance.
Damages Available from a Car Accident while at WorkIf you file both a workers' compensation and a third-party claim for damages, you will have several types of compensation possible in your settlement.
You are entitled to a portion of your regular pay, as well as additional benefits dependent on the type of injury you suffered from a workers' compensation claim. For a third-party claim, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. The at-fault driver's insurance may also cover the repairs to your vehicle, while a workers' compensation claim will not.