Employees Working In Multiple States May Need Multiple State Coverage
Employees that are working in multiple states need to have coverage for more than just one state. Even though the Walsh Test can identify what state has jurisdiction, each state can have peculiarities to their laws. For instance, in the bullet points below had WLSH all in one state. However, the Accident happened in a bordering state. This can become complicated.
Workers Comp coverage can be complicated at best if your company is operating in just one state. The situation becomes more complicated as your company expands into other states. However, you may be operating in states that you never thought possible.
I was trained on using the WALSH test for jurisdictions. You may want to follow the link to see the complete analysis of WALSH. A quick overview:
Where the employee worked at the time of an accident is the most important according to this test. The rest of the considerations become less important as you proceed down the list. I had actually seen a Workers Comp court judge use a modified version of this list.
Companies and their workers are becoming even more mobile due to the economy and the expansion of certain companies. I had said the WALSH jurisdictional test was almost foolproof over 10 years ago. I am presently not as sure.
For example, we assisted an insured that had a very complicated scenario:
- The employee transported goods/supplies in a small truck and made deliveries in three different states – Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado
- The company HQ was in Arizona
- The driver lived in Arizona
- The driver did not make any deliveries to Utah, but one day decided to take a shortcut on a rural road that ran through the very edge of Utah
- The employee ran off the road and was seriously injured in Utah
The WALSH test says:
- Worked – All three states mentioned
- Accident – UT
- Lived – AZ
- Salaried – AZ
- Hired – AZ
The employer had no coverage for UT. They expected the injured employee to file in AZ. He filed in UT. What does the employer do now? Check back with me tomorrow.
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