Workers’ Comp For Working At Home
Posted January 13, 2022 in Personal Injury
Work Injury Lawyers New Jersey
As work injury lawyers like our friends at Rispoli & Borneo P.C. can explain, working from home is here to stay. According to Pew Research, only 20% of Americans worked from home before the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, 54% of employees are saying they want to continue working from their homes.
When you think about how many employees are in the US, it’s a staggering number. But it brings many questions to light. Before the pandemic, if someone was hurt on the job, it meant workers’ comp – but does it still apply when you’re in your pajamas and working out of your favorite couch? Read on to learn more about workers’ comp if you’re working from home, and see how a work injury lawyer can help.
What is workers’ compensation?
Workers’ compensation is intended to keep employees financially afloat if they’re injured on the job. If you’re hurt at work, chances are you won’t be able to keep clocking in like nothing happened. Instead, you’ll have to take some time off to recover, and (in theory) workers’ comp should compensate you while you’re getting better.
What happens if I’m hurt working from home?
Workers’ compensation is much simpler if you actually work at an office or other place of business. However, it may still be possible to claim workers’ comp if you’re hurt working from home. For example, if you can prove that your at-home injuries happened while you were performing work-related duties, you may be able to collect workers’ comp.
What is the coming and going rule?
If you work from home on certain days and have to come in to the office on others, you should get familiar with the coming and going rule. Before the pandemic, if you were injured during your commute to the workplace before you clocked in – or heading home from the workplace after you clocked out – you wouldn’t be able to file for workers’ comp.
Now, however, if your employers request that you work from home some days out of the week, your home may count as a secondary workplace. If your employers have explicitly stated that your home is a secondary workplace, you may be able to collect workers’ comp for any injuries that occurred during your commute.
What is the personal comfort doctrine?
The personal comfort doctrine means you may be able to file for workers’ comp if you weren’t strictly performing work-related tasks. From a legal perspective, there are some elements of your workday that are necessary for personal comfort: going to the bathroom or getting a drink of water, to name a few. While you aren’t actually doing work, if you’re injured while performing these tasks on the job, you may still be able to file for workers’ comp.
What can a work injury lawyer do for me?
You can still get workers’ compensation if you’re working from home, but it’s up to you to provide proof that you were on the clock and performing work-related tasks when you were injured. Fortunately, a work injury lawyer can help. The right legal team can go over the details of your injury and your day-to-day activities in order to draw a connection between how you were hurt, when, and why.
Working from home is still work. Get in touch with a work injury lawyer today for more information about workers’ comp, no matter the workplace.