Foote, Mielke, Chavez & O'Neil, LLC
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Can I file for workers' comp if I get injured in another state?

If certain conditions are present, yes, you may be able to file for workers' compensation in the event that you are injured on the job while temporarily in a state other than where your employer is based. In fact, you may possibly be able to file in both the state where your company is and in the state in which you were injured. Many companies who operate in different states are required to carry workers' compensation policies for each state. However, according to WorkCompCentral, the Illinois Appellate Court recently issued a decision that may blur the lines as to when such separate policies are required.

In this particular case, a worker was employed by an Indiana-based company. His job as an ambulance worker sometimes had him picking up patients from across the state line in Illinois who were to receive treatment in Indiana. The employee was injured in an accident during such a trip to Illinois.

The employee filed workers' compensation claims with its employer's insurance carrier in both Indiana and Illinois. The insurance company claimed it did owe any payment on the Illinois claim and the trial court agreed, arguing that if the company operated in Illinois it needed to have a policy in Illinois. However, on appeal it was ruled that the company's insurance policy did provide for coverage in Illinois if certain conditions were met, which in this case they were.

Therefore, if your employer carries coverage only in the state in which it is physically based and you are injured while temporarily traveling to another state for your job, you may be able to file a claim in both states, depending on the terms of your employer's insurance policy.

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