The Law Office of Kurt H King

September 19, 2012

Mileage Reimbursement Under Missouri Workers’ Compensation Law

The question arises frequently as to whether and how much the employer owes the injured employee for mileage to and from doctors and other health care providers.

The answer lies in subsection 1 of Missouri statute 287.140.  That  law provides that IF the medical exam or treatment is “at a place OUTSIDE the local or metropolitan area from the employee’s principal place of employment,” the employer shall advance or reimburse the employee for all necessary and reasonable  expenses–BUT no transportation costs over 250 miles each way from the place of treatment.  (Query: do transportation costs include hotel/lodging costs at the Mayo Clinic, for example?)

As a general rule, what this means is that where the treatment or exam is INSIDE that local or metropolitan area of the employee’s principal place of employment, then the employee is NOT entitled to mileage or transportation expense reimbursement for travel to receive medical treatment for his/her injury or to undergo a medical exam requested by the employer/insurer.

But as a practical matter, the employer/insurer does pay for such mileage/transportation expense where the injury prevents the employee from being able to drive or otherwise reach the place of treatment or exam.  For example, the injury may have caused the employee to be physically unable to lawfully operate a vehicle to reach to the place of treatment.  Or, the prescribed pain medication may be so strong that to drive would constitute operating a vehicle under Under The Influence and thus be subject to a DUI charge.

So, there are exceptional cases but the injured employee most often bears the cost of going for medical treatment or exams in the local or metropolitan area of his principal place of employment.

Kurt H. King

Law Office of Kurt H. King, 20 E. Franklin, Liberty,  Clay County, Missouri 64068; 816.781.6000

Litigation, Personal Injury, Workers’ Compensation, Other Matters

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