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

Can I get workers’ compensation benefits in New Jersey if I fell and was injured at work while engaging in horseplay?

Answer: The answer to your question depends on the facts and circumstances surrounding your fall accident at work. New Jersey workers' compensation law provides that if workers are injured while at work, they are entitled to receive workers' comp benefits such as...

NJ Workers’ Compensation Benefits – Permanent Total Benefits

Many New Jersey workers are injured in accidents while at work. There are many types of accidents that cause injuries. Some are work related. For example, a worker suffers a crush injury to his hand due to improper guarding of a machine. Some accidents are not work...

NJ Workers’ Compensation Law – Are You Eligible for Benefits if Injured During Horseplay?

New Jersey workers injured while at work can make workers' compensation claims and receive certain benefits, such as medical care and lost wages. The injury must occur while the worker was at work. For example, a roofer who falls from a building while fixing a roof...

Injured at Work? Benefits You May Receive Under NJ’s Workers’ Compensation Act

New Jersey’s Workers’ Compensation Act allows individuals who are injured while at work to receive benefits for their work-related injuries. Regardless of who is at fault, injured workers/employees are eligible to receive benefits. However, injured workers are not...

I was injured at work in NJ, do I have to see the doctor my employer told me to go see?

Answer: Yes, you do. Under NJ workers' comp law, an employer is responsible for all medical treatment/expenses of the injured worker resulting from the work-related accident. However, the injured worker must treat with doctors his employer chooses, which in all...

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