Missing Work After Sustaining an Injury on Vacation – Do You Qualify for Compensation?

There should never be a dull moment when you are on vacation, but that’s only true in an ideal world. Unfortunately, dull moments like accidents can happen anytime in the real world. 

Usually, when you get injured within the course and scope of your job, you are eligible to collect workers’ compensation benefits from your employer or their insurer. But when you suffer an injury on vacation and even miss work once the vacation period is over, you may wonder whether you qualify for compensation to cover your medical bills and lost wages. 

Unfortunately, the answer can be yes or no. Yes, if negligent actions of another person caused the accident that resulted in your injuries, and no, if you are hoping to recover compensation under worker compensation insurance. 

About Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation only covers injuries or illnesses sustained by an employee when engaged in activity within their scope of work. Therefore, you do not necessarily have to be at the workplace; you can collect benefits if you are involved in a work-related activity. 

For example, if an office messenger suffers an injury on a company errand outside the office, they qualify for compensation under worker compensation. However, if the same messenger goes on a personal errand outside the office and suffers injuries, they are not eligible for compensation. 

The same applies to injuries sustained while on vacation. Luckily, there could be some exemptions. A good example is if you are injured on a company-sponsored vacation attending team-building or similar work activity alongside other employees, there could be a chance that you could recover workers’ compensation benefits.

Other Options for Recovering Damages

If you do not qualify for compensation under workers’ compensation, you may look at other available options depending on the prevailing circumstances, for example, the cause of the injuries:

  • Accidents on private property

Property and business owners, such as hotel owners, must ensure that all persons who legally enter their property are safe. If a property or business owner’s actions or inactions contribute to an accident that causes other injuries, the business or property owner will be liable for resulting damages.

  • Injuries resulting from defective products

Sometimes injuries can result from using defective products. For example, if you were riding a new water ski while on vacation, but its controls fail and cause an accident, you can file a claim against the water ski maker or the faulty part maker under product liability. Product liability law places the responsibility of ensuring the safety of consumers in the hands of the product manufacturer. 

Recoverable Damages

For a party to be held liable for an accident, the claimant must prove that a duty of care existed on the defendant’s part. Also, the claimant must show that the defendant breached that duty or acted negligently, resulting in an accident.

Putting together a case by yourself is no easy task. It can be a daunting and labor-intensive process, including gathering evidence, talking to witnesses, and putting together a convincing legal argument. Lastly, the claimant must prove that the accident resulted in injuries. A qualified personal injury lawyer is the right choice to navigate the minefield of liability, such as the personal injury lawyers at lawampm.com.


If liability is established, the claimant can recover three types of damages, including:

  • Economic damages

Economic damages refer to any financial expense necessitated by the injuries. They often include all quantifiable expenses such as lost wages, medical bills, cost of medication, walking or living aids, etc.

  • Non-economic damages

These are damages that are unquantifiable in monetary terms. They include psychological trauma, pain and suffering, disability, disfigurement, and loss of life’s enjoyment. Non-economic damages are not recoverable under workers’ compensation insurance.

  • Punitive damages

These are rarely awarded and only apply to injuries resulting from intentional conduct or gross negligence. They are meant to punish the defendant and deter them (and potential violators) from engaging in similar actions. 

You may also like

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Strikes Down Workers Compensation Law

5 Things You Need to Know About Workers’ Compensation

A Denied Workers’ Compensation Claim Leaves Employee Feeling Snakebite

Construction Workers Particularly at Risk for Falls, Trips, Slips