When I Volunteer, Do I Still Have The Right to File For Workers’ Comp if I am Hurt?

Those who donate their time to good causes should be applauded. But what happens if one of the volunteers gets hurt? Does Arizona’s workers’ compensation statute shield paid workers and unpaid ones like volunteers? If you have been hurt, you can seek help from a workers compensation lawyer in lake havasu city.

Does Arizona Provide Volunteers With Workers’ Compensation?

Traditional volunteers in Arizona are not eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. People who do paid jobs are the typical beneficiaries of workers’ compensation. Some notable outliers exist, though.

Who is eligible for workers’ compensation when volunteering?

Voluntary employees in Arizona are entitled to workers’ compensation as long as their employer has a resolution or ordinance in place specifying the nature of the voluntary work and the individuals eligible for benefits. Volunteer firefighters, police officers, members of the sheriff’s reserve, healthcare volunteers, and emergency management trainees are all examples of covered workers. 

Can You Tell Me About the Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

The Arizona workers’ compensation program provides the following benefits:

  • Workers’ compensation benefits cover all medically necessary care for an on-the-job injury.
  • Volunteers who are injured while working for a political subdivision are eligible for temporary compensation benefits equal to two-thirds of the difference between their pre-injury income and their current earnings, or $400 per month.
  • Compensation payments that last a lifetime and take into account the severity of an injury, handicap, or disfiguring scar on one’s face.
  • Surviving family members who depended on the worker’s income can get death and burial payments.

Injured While Volunteering? Here is What to Do

If you get hurt while volunteering, here is what you can do to defend yourself:

  • If you have been hurt at work, you should immediately let your boss know.
  • Document the scene of the incident or the unsafe environment that led to your injuries with photographs or video.
  • Get in touch with a doctor right away. Inform your doctor that you were hurt while doing community service.
  • Make sure you have copies of everything from your medical documents to your bills, invoices, receipts, and pay stubs.
  • Listen to your healthcare provider’s advice.

Finally, talk to an attorney experienced in workers’ comp as soon as possible to learn more about your rights and options. The Arizona Industrial Commission only allows you to file a claim for workers’ compensation once every year. In the event that you do not qualify for workers’ compensation, an attorney can assist you in investigating alternative possible legal avenues for recouping damages for your injuries. 

Some volunteers, for instance, might not qualify for workers’ comp, but they might have a personal injury claim against the company or organization they were helping out at the time of their injury. 

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