Workers Compensation and Working From Home: What You Need to Know
Workers Compensation Working From Home – The COVID-19 pandemic forced many people to work from home. This is a great opportunity for workers, but also comes with risks. If you are injured while working from home, is worker's compensation available to help? In this blog post, we will answer that question and give you some guidance on how to file a worker's compensation claim.
Receiving Workers Compensation Working From Home
The basis for receiving compensation as a worker is the same whether you work in an office, on a
construction site, or from home. You are entitled to workers' compensation if your injury occurs while you are working and your injury is directly related to your work. An example of this might be tripping and falling while moving boxes of files belonging to your workplace from your garage to your office at home. Can you imagine doing this same work at your main place of work instead of your home? If so, then you might be able to get compensation for it if you are injured.
There are some circumstances where your employer might not be liable for your injury, even if it occurred while you were working. An example of this might be if you were injured while working from home, but your injury was not related to your work. For instance, if you slipped and fell on a wet floor while taking a break from work to make lunch, your employer would not be liable for your injuries because they are not directly related to your work.
Examples of Workers Compensation Working From Home
There have been a few cases of people who were injured while working from home and received worker's compensation. In one case, a woman in California was awarded $172,000 after she was injured in a car accident while on a work-related phone call. The woman had been working from home for two years when the accident happened.
In another case, a man in Florida was awarded $15,000 after he injured his back while working from home. The man had been working from home for four years when the accident happened. He was lifting a box of printer paper that his employer had sent to him and injured his back in the process.
These cases show that it is possible to receive worker's compensation for an injury that occurs while working from home. However, it is important to note that each case is different and the circumstances will be taken into account when determining whether or not you are eligible for compensation.
Filing a Workers Compensation Claim
Notify your employer as soon as possible when work injuries occur. You should then follow your employer's procedures for filing a worker's compensation claim. In most cases, you will need to fill out a worker's compensation claim form and submit it to your employer. Your employer will then forward the form to their insurance company.
Keep in mind that there are time limits for filing a worker's compensation claim. In most states, you have between 30 and 90 days from the date of your injury to file a claim. If you do not file within this time frame, you may lose your right to receive compensation.
Also be aware that worker's compensation claims can be denied. The most common reason for denying a claim is that the injury is not work-related. If your claim is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision.
Possible Injuries Sustained by Working From Home
Working from home may be seen as a relatively-safe environment to work in, but there are several injuries that could occur while working from home. Examples include:
- Slip and falls (as demonstrated by the mentioned cases)
- Automobile accidents occurring while seeing a client, making a delivery, or driving to a work-related location
- Mental stress (in California, a worker must show that the predominant cause of the stress was from the work)
- Injuries relating to poor posture or repetitive stress, like carpal tunnel syndrome or back and neck injuries
Check out our article on What No Fault Workers Compensation Means For California Injured Employees to learn about the types of benefits available.
Injuries and Workers Not Liable for Worker's Compensation
There are also cases where employers are not liable for injuries sustained while an employee works from home. The easiest of these to understand is injuries that are related to personal business. Following up on the example already mentioned, if an individual was cooking some food for their lunch break and they cut themselves while cooking, their employer would probably not be liable for the injury. You need to call 866-NAPOLIN to consult with a lawyer to find out!
There are also certain jobs that are not covered by worker's compensation. Some examples include: Independent contractors.
OSHA currently does not require employers to inspect the homes of employees for work hazards, and therefore do not hold employers liable for the conditions of someone's home office.
What To Do If You are Injured and Needing Workers Compensation Working From Home
Insurance companies have protocols to protect injured workers while working at home. To file for worker's compensation if you're injured while working from home, follow these steps:
- Notify your employer of the injury as soon as possible.
- Follow your employer's procedures for filing a claim—this usually involves filling out a form and submitting it to your employer.
- Your boss will send the form to their insurance company, and the process should be underway
- If this doesn't happen, call a lawyer immediately. Actually, always consult with a lawyer to learn your rights.
Questions about whether you are eligible for worker's compensation? Need help filing a claim, contact a workers' compensation? Find an attorney in your area. The lawyers at Napolin Accident Injury Lawyer have a lot of experience getting workers the compensation. Get the benefits you deserve regardless of where you are working. Contact us today for a free consultation at (866)-NAPOLIN
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