Pennsylvania Workers’ Comp: When Are Commuting Employees Covered?

Date: October 8, 2020

Coming-and-Going Rule in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation

In general, an employee is only eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits if he was injured in the course and scope of his employment. Commuting to and from work is not considered to be in the course and scope of employment. See Mansfield Bros. Painting v. WCAB (German), 72 A.3d 842 (PA.Commw. 2013) (the “coming and going rule”). However, the following are exceptions to the “coming and going rule”:

  • The employee has no fixed place of employment
  • The employment contract includes transportation to and from work
  • The employee is on a special assignment for the employer, and
  • Special circumstances exist such that the employee was furthering the employer’s business at the time of the accident.

See Peterson v. WCAB (PRN Nursing Agency), 597 A.2d 1116 (Pa. 1991); Peer v. WCAB (B & W Constr.), 503 A.2d 1096 (Pa.Commw. 1986). An example of an employee with “no fixed place of employment” would be a home health aid who is frequently assigned to work at different clients’ homes by her employer. An example of an employee whose employment contract “includes transportation to and from work” is a traveling salesman who is provided a work vehicle for use 24 hours per day with no restriction. An example of an employee on “a special assignment for the employer” would be an employee who had left work, gone home and later that same day was called by his supervisor to come to another property operated by the employer to perform additional work.

If you, a friend or a family member were injured at work, you need to immediately contact an attorney to discuss your legal rights. Your initial injury consultation with an attorney at Dougherty Leventhal & Price, LLP is always free and our law firm does not get paid unless and until we obtain a financial recovery for you. Remember— Injury? Call DLP! (570) C-A-L-L-D-L-P.

John Finnerty
Attorney Finnerty has been representing clients in Northeastern Pennsylvania as an Attorney with Dougherty Leventhal & Price, LLP for over 25 years.