Tis the season for fun, good cheer, and that upcoming annual company Christmas party. Employees look forward to it every year – it’s a time to relax, have a laugh about funny things that happened throughout the year, and celebrate company achievements. As much as we’d like to think these events run smoothly, sometimes end of the year work parties can get a little out of control. So, what happens when you or someone else gets hurt at your work holiday party?
Will I Still Receive Workers’ Compensation?
This is a very tricky question to answer because it depends on many variables. The easiest situation to answer is in cases where your employer’s liability extends to work functions. If it does, you’ll be covered by workers’ compensation. There’s also a greater chance you’ll receive workers’ compensation if you’re injured at a holiday party that’s considered mandatory by your employer. After that, it gets a little more complicated. When an employee is injured, or even passes away, courts must decide whether the accident at a company event arose “out of and in the course of employment.”
For example, say a company Christmas party generated a fight between two drunk employees. Courts may rule that because the employer supplied the alcohol, entertainment, and venue for the party, the alcohol motivated the fight and the employer is therefore liable. In another example, say an employee passes away due to alcohol poisoning after challenging another fellow worker to a drinking contest. Courts may rule that because the employee voluntarily drank excessively, the death is not related to the employer and workers’ compensation should not be provided.
What happens if there’s an accident after leaving the party?
This answer also depends on different situations. If an employee chooses to leave the function and make his or her way to other parties, restaurants, bars, etc., coverage doesn’t follow. Workers’ compensation also doesn’t cover any illegal or unsafe behavior employees may participate in, whether before, during, or after a company party. If an employee is ready to go home, but has been drinking and decides to drive despite the employer insisting on a designated driver, any potential vehicle accidents will not be covered under workers’ compensation. But, if your company Christmas party is mandatory, and you’re involved in a vehicle accident while driving to or from the party, you have a higher chance of receiving workers’ compensation because you had to attend.
We know accidents happen, even if it’s during an innocent, yet entertaining company holiday party. We also know that when it comes to workers’ compensation, the process can be complicated, confusing, and very stressful. If you’re being denied benefits and believe you should be getting compensated, our workers’ comp lawyers want to talk to you. Get in touch with us today so we can get started on your case. The holiday season is meant to be a joyous time – let us handle your legal dilemma so you can get back to enjoying your friends, family, and holiday spirit.
Call today for a free consultation and explore your options - (910) 341-3202
Our attorneys specialize in workman's comp, personal injury, and dispute resolution services.
Prior, Criner & Edwards Law, PLCC. have a long history of building long-term client relationships founded on trust and mutual respect.
With over 25 years of experience in civil litigation and thousands of cases mediated, Frank specializes in the fields of workers compensation and personal injury law.
Sherman is Licensed to Practice Law in North and South Carolina. He has extensive education in law and the mediation practice, professional experience and impressive memberships in many noteworthy political, civic and business organizations.
Ashley M. Edwards
Ashley is a NC attorney and certified mediator in North and South Carolina, Ashley has represented hundreds of clients and mediated thousands of cases for attorneys, insurance carriers and private companies.
“These guys are awesome and care about their clients very much. I would suggest anyone hurt on the job to contact them. Cannot express my appreciation enough to them!"
“Ashley Edwards genuinely cares about his clients and holds himself to the highest standards in all of his professional interactions. I am happy to recommend him to anyone who needs help navigating the workers compensation process."
“Ashley has been practicing compensation law in the greater Wilmington area for 15+ years. I have often turned to him for advice and counsel. He knows the law, is trustworthy, listens to his clients, and fights to do the right thing for them. He is my first call!"
“Mr Edwards made my case feel like it was his most important case. He is so caring and attentive."
“This was the first and only law firm I contacted after being injured. Everyone there has been on point concerning my case and extremely professional. I highly recommend contacting workers comp first if injured. It will be as if it's the most important case they have and they will not disappoint. Thank you to the entire team."
“Wonderful Experience under difficult circumstances. They helped me understand my rights and options under the law. Mr. Edwards took the time to help and meet with me whenever I had questions. He is highly recommended for his expert advice and service. "
“This is the place to go if you get hurt on the job Ashley and his paralegal Janet are really nice and super easy to talk to and they take the time to really listen to your problems and get you the help you need and deserve."
“They came out took out time to listen very smart he knows what he's talking about he heard me out and took my case under difficult sircumstances and i highly advise this is the law firm to consider."
“Sherman is one of the best mediators that I know---he is extremely proficient in Workers' Compensation Law and he is an outstanding communicator. I give Sherman my highest rating!"
“Great Experience with a caring lawyer who took the time to actually meet with me. He handled my case to the end and explained everything. Highly recommended."
“Ashley is very knowledgeable and relatable to his clients, to opposing counsel, and to all parties when acting as mediator. "
“Ashley didn't always tell me what I wanted to hear but he always told me the truth. He is very knowledgeable and professional... I would highly recommend Ashley if you feel the need to hire an attorney. "
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