Can I File for Workers Comp Benefits if I Work from Home?

Workers Comp Attorneys

Since the spring of 2020, more and more Americans have been working remotely. Whether by choice or as a result of a Covid-19 stay-at-home order, you may now be working from home. It’s important to understand your rights as a remote employee, whether you’re working remotely on a temporary basis or permanently. Just as you’re entitled to a safe jobsite if you work outside your home, you have certain safety-related rights while working from home. For example, if you’re experiencing exacerbation of a repetitive stress injury as a result of your work activities, your employer must generally make reasonable accommodations to help you manage this situation.

Additionally, if you’re otherwise eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, you should generally remain eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim for any injury or occupational illness that occurs while you’re working remotely. This is generally true regardless of whether your injury or illness has resulted from an accident or a repetitive trauma scenario. With that said, every state’s workers’ compensation system is different, so it’s important to avoid making assumptions about your situation until you’ve spoken with a New York workers’ comp attorney, like one from Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C.. Also, remote employees generally have a tougher time having their workers’ compensation claims approved as insurance companies often claim that a worker’s injuries may have resulted from activities that were not occupational in nature. As a result, it’s particularly important for remote workers to consult a workers’ compensation law firm when filing a claim in order to avoid having that claim rejected or undervalued.

Workers’ Compensation for Remote Workers – An Introduction
Most of the time, if a worker is “on the clock,” engaging in actions that their employer benefits from, or is otherwise required by their employer to be engaging in certain activities, an eligible employee will be able to collect workers’ compensation benefits if/when injury or illness occurs. These rules get a little cloudier however, when a worker is operating remotely.

Say that an employee is on-site and on the clock at an office building. When entering the bathroom, the worker slips, falls, and suffers moderate head trauma. The worker can obviously collect workers’ compensation benefits as a result of the head trauma because they are onsite and on the clock. But what if a remote employee slips, falls, and suffers moderate head trauma during working hours because their toddler left a wet towel on the bathroom floor? Is that scenario considered a work-related injury simply because it occurred during working hours? A skilled attorney can help you build a case if doing so is at all possible. After all, you reasonably take bathroom breaks during working hours while onsite, so it can be argued that taking reasonable bathroom breaks is “job-related” even if you’re working remotely. However, as insurance claims adjusters are less likely to see the potential employer liability associated with a remote injury in the worker’s personal bathroom, it’s important to have an attorney help you build the strongest possible claim.

Legal Assistance Is Available
Exploring your legal options in a confidential, risk-free setting costs you nothing and may benefit you tremendously. If you haven’t yet scheduled a consultation with our firm to discuss your remote work-related injury, please do so today. We look forward to speaking with you.