I am a Temp Worker, Am I Eligible to Receive Workers’ Compensation?By Kenton Koszdin Law Office on March 3, 2014 | In Workers Compensation Claims
The scope and focus of the American economy is changing rapidly — especially in the realm of employment. In the past, full-time permanent jobs were the norm, but today, more and more Americans are finding that those jobs may not exist or are difficult to find. To make ends meet, they are turning more frequently to temporary jobs to fill the economic gaps.
Today, the U.S. temp industry employs a record 2.8 million workers.
While the injury rate among regular employees across the nation has remained steady or has dropped in the past five years, the rate of temp worker injuries has increased in Florida, California, Oregon, and Massachusetts.
Since the 2008 recession, temp employees increasingly have been hired to do work in factories, warehouses, and construction sites. An analysis done by ProPublica, a non-profit newsroom, found that temp workers are at a 50 percent greater risk of getting injured on the job in California than permanent employees. And this statistic doesn’t take into account the higher percentage of workers who are injured while doing blue-collar temp work.
The reasons for this are varied, but a temporary worker’s lack of experience on the job factors heavily into the increased injury rates — especially among those who are sent to work at blue collar jobs where they are much more likely to be involved in manual labor or will be asked to operate unfamiliar heavy equipment and machines with little or no training.
According to Pacific Standard, industries’ increasing reliance on temp workers subverts one of the strongest incentives that companies have to keep their workplaces safe — namely, the economic incentive companies have to lower workplace injuries for fear of paying higher workers’ compensation insurance premiums if they don’t.
For the most part, the company that takes on a temp employee is not required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to cover that worker. However, since a temporary employee is considered an employee of the temp agency, agencies are usually required to carry workers’ comp insurance for those they send out to work.
So, in a nutshell, if you are a temp worker and injured on the job, you will most likely be covered under workers’ comp. However, as a temp, the journey to receiving the benefits you deserve can be rockier, especially if the temp agency and the employer start to battle over who is responsible for covering the costs of a workplace injury.
If you are a temporary worker who has questions concerning your legal rights following a workplace injury, please contact Kenton Koszdin Law Office in southern California. Call us toll-free at (800) 438-7734 or contact us online today. If you are a temporary worker in California, you still have legal rights and protections.