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Steven M. Lee, PC

Q:
My daughter took a job under her college’s Federal Work-Study program—is she covered for her workplace injury?

A:

As college students start packing their bags and boxes to return to school, many are considering taking on employment to earn money for school. Many of the jobs on campus are considered part of the Federal Work-Study (FWS) program, a program that allows students to work to earn a set amount of money as financial assistance.

These jobs are highly coveted because most are required to work around each student’s academic schedule. They offer students the chance to earn money without detracting from their studies, and can often teach them valuable skills that can be used in their studies or in the workforce.

The Benefits of Work-Study Go Beyond Money

These work-study jobs are not meant to be full-time jobs for students, so they do not come with health insurance, unemployment benefits, paid holidays or sick days, or vacation. Time spent in a work-study position will generally not earn a student Social Security Administration credits, so they will not see such deductions from their paychecks.

One benefit that nearly every work-study position comes with—but few students are aware of—is workers’ compensation coverage for on-the-job injuries. While FWS jobs are rarely considered dangerous, injuries can still occur, and it is important that students are aware of the proper procedure to follow if they are hurt at work:

  • Notify their supervisor of the accident immediately
  • Notify the financial aid department of the injury
  • Seek medical attention for injuries as soon as possible after the accident

Make sure your child is aware of her position’s coverage, as well as the proper procedure in the event of a workplace injury. While workers’ comp benefits for low-paying, part-time FWS work may be significantly less than a standard full-time employee’s, these student may still be able to receive basic medical and lost wage benefits.

Has your child been injured while on the job at her Federal Work-Study position? Contact Houston workers’ compensation attorney Steve Lee to learn more about her rights today!

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