FREE CONSULTATIONS 856.983.8695

New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Law – Can Workers Receive Workers’ Comp Benefits if Injured While on Coffee Breaks?

Philip Ciprietti, NJ Car & Truck Accident Lawyer

Philip Ciprietti offers clients a genuine interest in their well-being and success and places clients’ interests first in all matters. Since 1982, Mr. Ciprietti has been certified by the NJ Supreme Court as a Certified Civil Trial Attorney.

Review: "His commitment and his willingness to go the extra mile, to fight hard for you make Phil an outstanding attorney. He is the one you want on your side." Read more testimonials.

In general, NJ workers are eligible to receive workers’ comp benefits if their injuries arise out of and in the course of employment. The definition of “employment” is defined by N.J.S.A. 34:15-36, which provides:

Employment shall be deemed to commence when an employee arrives at the employer’s place of employment to report for work and shall terminate when the employee leaves the employer’s place of employment, excluding areas not under the control of the employer.

Therefore, workers traveling to work from home and vice versa are generally not eligible to receive workers’ comp benefits if they are injured during routine travel.

What about an employee who leaves the office to grab a cup of coffee? Can he receive workers’ comp benefits if he is hit and injured by a car while walking there? Yes, according to New Jersey case law.

Related: New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Law – Denial of Benefits due to Major Deviation from Work

In Cooper v. Barnickel Enterprises Inc., a NJ worker was injured in a car accident while he was on his way to get coffee from his job. The coffee shop was 5 miles away, and the court held that he was eligible to receive workers’ compensation because a coffee break was a minor deviation from his job activities. The court held that “accidents occurring during coffee breaks for off-site employees, which are equivalent to those of on-site workers, are minor deviations from employment which permit recovery of workers’ compensation benefits.”

Further, the court went on to say that injuries that occur during on-site lunch breaks and coffee breaks are generally found compensable by New Jersey courts. The fact that the employee had to go off-site to get coffee does not exclude him from getting workers’ comp benefits. If he was injured during a coffee break on-site, he would have been eligible for workers’ comp benefits.

However, if the same employee decided to go to the mall before going to the coffee shop and was injured in a car accident, he is probably not going to be eligible to receive workers’ comp benefits. Going to the mall is a major deviation from work, and NJ courts would likely find that the worker is not eligible to receive workers’ comp benefits.

If you were injured while working, whether on-premises or off-premises, it is important to talk to an experienced workers’ comp lawyer to properly evaluate your case. Call Philip T. Ciprietti, Esq. to schedule a FREE consultation.  856.983.8695

Related:

DISCLAIMER: This website does not create any attorney-client relationship or provide legal advice.  Read full disclaimer at the bottom of this page.

NJ Workers’ Comp Law Articles

Cherry Hill, NJ Workers’ Comp Law- Injured While Pulling Out of Employer’s Parking Lot

NJ workers are generally ineligible to receive workers' compensation benefits for injuries which occur while going to or leaving the workplace. For example, a worker injured in a car or pedestrian accident while leaving the office would probably be ineligible for...

NJ Workers’ Comp – Report NJ Work Injury & Third Party Claims

Question: Aside from reporting my work injury while working at a factory in New Jersey, what else should I do? Answer: Depending on how the accident happened, you may have a personal injury lawsuit against another party. You should talk to a personal injury lawyer in...

Injured in a NJ Highway Construction Site Auto Accident? What Are Your Legal Options?

New Jersey’s highways and roadways are often under construction. In the spring time, there are more work crews working on the Garden State Parkway or New Jersey Turnpike. Workers may be injured while working at the highway construction sites. One type of accident that...

New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Law – Denial of Benefits due to Major Deviation from Work

New Jersey workers may get injured while they are at work or performing their job duties. Some jobs involve a higher risk of injury than others. For example, a NJ heavy equipment operator at a NJ construction site faces a higher risk of injury than a NJ accountant...

NJ Workers’ Compensation Law – What To Do After A Workplace Injury

Many people in the work force are injured every day in New Jersey. Per workers’ compensation law, injured workers may file workers’ compensation claims with their employers. NJ Workers’ Compensation Basics In general, workers’ compensation benefits are available to...

FREE CONSULTATIONS

    Spam:  

    *No attorney-client relationship is created by use of this email form. Do not email confidential or time-sensitive information. Call the firm for immediate assistance.

    OUR OFFICE

    79 S. Maple Avenue
    Marlton, NJ 08053
    Phone: 856.983.8695
    Fax: 856.983.0015
    Toll Free: 800.281.8695

    Google Map/Directions