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Call for a FREE Consultation: (916) 288-9193Hablamos Espanol • Мы говорим по-русски
Call for a FREE Consultation: (916) 288-9193 Hablamos Espanol • Мы говорим по-русски

Call for a FREE Consultation: (916) 288-9193
Hablamos Espanol • Мы говорим по-русски

Understanding California’s “Going and Coming” Rule

Have you ever heard a friend or co-worker describe an accident that happened on the way to or from work? Our car accident attorneys at Sacramento Workers Compensation Attorneys have helped many clients involved in traffic accidents while going to or coming home from work. Typically, the first question they ask at the free consultation we offer all clients is, “Do I have a work-related claim?”

Understanding California’s “Going and Coming” RuleHave if you’ve never experienced the unfortunate circumstance of being involved in an accident during your commute to or from work, you may wonder what the answer is. The reality is that it’s not a straightforward answer. Many factors must be considered in workers’ compensation law, and no two cases are the same.

Our experienced team of workers’ compensation attorneys at Sacramento Workers Compensation Attorneys is ready to help if you are caught in this complicated situation.  

Grasping California’s ‘Going and Coming’ Rule

Under California law, the ‘Going and Coming‘ rule is a central factor in determining whether injuries sustained in a car accident can be categorized as job-related. Fundamentally, the ‘Going and Coming’ rule states that injuries sustained during an employee’s routine commute to or from work typically do not fall under workers’ compensation coverage. After all, how an employee travels to work or home is not the employer’s responsibility. For most employees, that decision is their choice and, therefore, their responsibility if something happens.

The Underlying Logic of the ‘Going and Coming’ Rule

This is because employees are not actively “doing” their jobs while commuting to or from work. Commuting to work does not directly benefit the employer; however, it benefits the employee to show up to work, as we all know. So, these activities are seen under the law as not being within an employee’s job-related responsibilities. This means the employer is not responsible for what happens. What does all this mean? In short, if an action is not part of a worker’s job responsibilities, workers’ compensation benefits would not apply.

Exceptions to the ‘Going and Coming’ Rule

As with many rules and regulations, California’s ‘Going and Coming’ rule does have some exceptions. This is where it gets somewhat complicated, which is why it cannot be overstated how important it is to seek the advice of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney who can listen to all the facts and get to the bottom of who is responsible. Here are a couple of scenarios where exceptions to the ‘Going and Coming’ Rule may apply, as our attorneys can explain in detail at your free consultation:

  • Exception #1: An employer asks an employee to do a work-related errand during their commute (e.g., on the way to work). The employee has a traffic accident and gets hurt.
  • Exception #2: A person’s job requires traveling to multiple job sites and, during that travel, gets injured in a car accident.
  • Exception #3: An employee gets in a collision on company property (e.g., in the parking lot).

As you may have already figured out, there can be many variables in the three exceptions cited above.

The Significance of a Free Consultation

Workers’ compensation laws are not easy to understand. It takes a skilled, experienced workers’ compensation attorney to understand the nuances of every client’s unique circumstances. The bottom line is that you must determine if your employer is responsible. Our free consultations are designed to ensure people get the valuable insight they need from a legal professional who knows workers’ compensation laws inside and out. Then, if we offer to take your case and you hire us, you will pay no fees until and unless you win a settlement.

If you have been injured while commuting to or from work, you need answers. Your co-workers and friends may have strong opinions on the topic, but what matters is that you find out what a legal professional has to say. It costs nothing to find out if you have a claim. We will answer your questions and give you the clarity you need concerning this complicated area of workers’ compensation law in California.

Call Sacramento Workers Compensation Attorneys today at 916-218-9193.