A Wendy’s Fast Food Worker reportedly had a bad drive thru incident. A customer pulled a gun. Apparently, there was a missing sauce packet! It was reported that the man “was driving around the parking lot brandishing a gun and refusing to leave.” foxnews.com
There is no report of any physical injury. Thus, we will discuss whether this fact pattern can give rise to a workers’ compensation claim.
Can This Fact Pattern Give Rise to A Work Injury?
In California, there is no need to have a physical altercation in order to have a work injury claim. In this instance, there was an actual incident. We have a customer acting in a hostile fashion. He was reportedly brandishing a weapon and acting in a menacing fashion. If the Worker experienced a physical reaction to this event, it would be considered as a work-related event. In this matter, if the Worker had accidently not provided the customer the sauce packet, it would not be relevant. Workers’ compensation is a “no fault” system. This event would not be considered as a “good faith personnel action.” It was merely an exchange between an employee and a customer.
What Type of injury Can Be Claimed?
In California, it is possible to have both physical and psychological injuries arise from such an incident. Injuries, however, must be documented by medical specialists. In this instance, there could be a physical injury, i.e. an aggravation of a blood pressure condition. Likewise, a psychiatric disorder could be found as well, i.e. a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder. It should be emphasized that the incident alone does not make a claim. There must also be an injury.
What if I Need Advice?
If you would like a free consultation regarding workers’ compensation, please contact the Law Offices of Edward J. Singer, a Professional Law Corporation. We have been helping people in Central and Southern California deal with their workers’ compensation cases for 27 years. Contact us today for more information.