The Going To And Coming From Rule In South Carolina Workers’ Compensation

Generally speaking a worker that is traveling home from work or into work is not covered under South Carolina Workers’ Comp. However, with every general rule there are always exceptions .

This “rule” is no different. Under South Carolina Workers’ Compensation law, an injured workers going into work or coming home from work may be covered if one of the exceptions is met.

Exceptions To The Going And Coming Rule

Under South Carolina Workers’ Compensation law, the Courts have recognized five (5) exceptions to the going and coming rule:

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    1. The Injured Employee Is In A Company Vehicle

    Generally, the “going and coming rule” prohibits employees from recovering workers compensation benefits from injuries that occur while going to or coming from work.

    We see this a lot with construction supervisors or foremen that take their work truck home at night. Unless they substantially deviated from their path, then they may be covered as the truck is provided as an employee benefit.

    2. Charged With A Work Related Task

    An employee will not be precluded from receiving benefits where the employee, on their way to or from their work, is charged with some duty or task in connection with their employment.

    The injured employee was charged with some work related task while coming or going. Some examples are when an employee is required to deliver job site materials, pick up office products or generally perform some task in the normal job duties;

    3. Inherently Dangerous Route In And Out Of Work

    I once handled a case where this exception was applied. A worker was hit by an oncoming vehicle while pulling into the job site. Forget for a moment he was driving a company vehicle but this particular employer had only one way in and one way out of the complex and happened to be on a blind curve where you had to take a leap of faith to get across traffic.

    The presiding Commissioner found this way to be inherently dangerous especially because it was the only way into the employer facility and applied this exception finding that the injury was covered under work comp.

    4. Close Proximity To Employment

    When the place of injury is in proximity to the employer’s premises and the injury occurred because the place of the injury was brought within the scope of employment by an employment contract that expressly or implicitly required the employee to use it in going to and coming from their work.

    We often see this when an employee is injured in the parking lot of the job, a walkway into the facility or while on site before performing a work related task.

    5. Special Errand Or Task

    Slightly different than the work related task example in #2, a work related task is a task within the normal job description. A special errand would be something asked by the employer that is outside the normal scope of employment. For example, if an employee is asked to go pick up lunch, dry cleaning, etc.

    When the injury is sustained by the employee while performing a special task, service, mission, or errand for their employer, even before or after customary working hours or on a day on which they doesn’t ordinarily work.

    A Denial Of Claim Normal In Going And Coming

    A denial is a normal response by an insurance carrier in an going and coming case. It can be difficult for an adjuster to understand that an injury that did not occur while at work is covered under workers’ compensation. If you have been injured while going to or coming from work is it important to at least determine whether your claim falls within one of these enumerated exceptions.

    If it does then you may have a claim. For additional information, contact Greenville workers’ comp lawyer Ryan Montgomery at (864) 207-4764 for a free consultation.

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