There are three basic eligibility requirements in order to receive workers’ compensation benefits.
Your employer is covered by workers’ compensation insurance: The vast majority of employers are required by law to have workers’ compensation coverage, but there are some exceptions. These exceptions vary by state and usually take into account the number of employees working for the employer, the type of business, and the type of work the employees are doing.
You are considered an employee: Not all workers are considered equal under workers’ compensation laws. Independent contractors are not considered employees, and will not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. Common examples of workers who are considered independent contractors are freelancers, consultants, and some IT professionals.
Your injury is work-related: In most cases, this is straightforward. But not always. Say you’re injured on your lunch break, but while fetching a sandwich for your boss. Certain cases require professional analysis.