01.25.2018

Traveling Employees May Receive Compensation For “Going & Coming”

In Pennsylvania, a work injury is compensable only if it occurs while the injured party was performing her job. Whether an injury is incurred during the scope and course of employment often rests on the facts of each case. For 112 years, the attorneys at Powell Law have represented Pennsylvania workers and litigated this common but important issue. Protecting injured workers and helping them recover just compensation requires the experience and expertise of the workers’ compensation attorneys at Powell Law.

Pursuant to § 301(c)(1) of the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act , compensable injuries under the Act are those that occur during the course and scope of employment “sustained while the employee is actually engaged in the furtherance of the business or affairs of the employer, whether upon the employer’s premises or elsewhere.”

Injuries are not compensable if they are sustained while the employee is operating a motor vehicle where the employee is not otherwise in the course of employment at the time of injury.” This rule applies to the employee’s trips to and from work and is known as the “going and coming rule.” This rule applies even if the employer provides the vehicle to the employee.

However, there are four exceptions to the coming and going rule:

  • the employee has no fixed work location (the employee is a “traveling employee”);
  • the employment contract specifies transportation to and from work;
  • the employee is on a special mission for the employer; and
  • special circumstances where the employee was furthering the business of the employer.

Whether an exception applies typically is decided on a case-by-case basis. Pennsylvania law favors the protection of employees: “in determining whether a claimant is a traveling employee, (because) the [Act] is remedial in nature and intended to benefit the worker …the Act must be liberally construed to effectuate its humanitarian objectives.” Peterson v. Workmen’s Comp. Appeal Bd. (PRN Nursing Agency), 597 A.2d 1116, 1120 (Pa.1991). Thus, course of employment is a broader concept for traveling employees and they may recover benefits for injuries incurred while traveling since they are exempt from the “going and coming rule.”

For 112 years, our attorneys have represented all types of workers in workers’ compensation cases. Our decades of experience make us the clear and obvious choice for representation in workers’ compensation matters in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and surrounding areas. At Powell Law, we effectively assist clients throughout the entire workers’ compensation claims process. Consult an experienced Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney. Contact Powell Law at (570) 961-0777. The consultation is FREE!

Traveling Employees May Receive Compensation For "Going & Coming"

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