Can I Claim Workers’ Compensation While Working From Home?
With the current climate of COVID-19, many New Jersey employees are working from home. This has been a trend for years as technology continues to make it easier for workers to complete their tasks without actually commuting to the office. Typically, a home office is a relatively safe environment. However, injury can still occur there. When it does, and your injuries are sustained while performing your work duties, you may wonder if you're eligible for workers' compensation benefits.
Can I Claim Workers' Compensation?
The short answer is maybe. Generally, employees are entitled to workers' compensation benefits when they suffer an injury or illness that arose within the scope of their employment. However, proving that injuries were sustained within the scope of employment is somewhat more difficult for remote employees.
Work Related Injuries From Home
Most workers' compensation claims are encountered in industries where heavy labor and/or inherent danger is involved, such as manufacturing or construction. However, with such a large number of employees now working from home, there is likely to be an increase in the number of injuries reported from the "home office."
For injuries to be considered compensable, the accident which caused injury must have arisen directly from the scope of your work duties. If, for example, you injured your back moving boxes of documents and those documents and/or boxes were directly related to your job duties, then the injuries could potentially be considered in a workers' compensation claim.
The Burden Of Proof
In all workers' compensation claims, the burden is on the injured individual to prove their injuries arose out of their job duties. You must provide evidence to demonstrate your injuries are work related in order for them to be compensable. These claims are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
When you're working at your employer's office or place of business, it is easier to prove an injury arose from your work. There are typically witnesses present and you're usually performing work at your employer's place of business. Demonstrating you were working at the time of injury when you are working from home is not always easy to do.
How We Can Help
If you've been injured while performing your job duties, you may be eligible for workers' compensation benefits. The workers' compensation process is complex and an experienced workers' compensation lawyer can guide you through the process. From filing your claim, to litigating your case in front of a judge, a lawyer can be instrumental in obtaining fair compensation.
We invite you call or contact us today for a free consultation to discuss the specifics of your case.