Accidents occurring while working are typically considered workplace accidents. Like most people, you may be working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Let’s say you’re getting sick or injured at home. What then? Will you get paid accident at work compensation? The truth is, making an accident at home claim can be more difficult than you think if you’re no longer working on-site. The falls, slips, and other accidents associated with in-person workplace injuries have migrated at home.
One of the reasons is that few home working spaces can replicate the environments of well-planned corporate spaces. Not everyone has access to a dedicated home office space, proper chairs and desks, keyboard placement and ergonomic monitors, and other office basics that help reduce accidents.
Why are organizations letting their employees work from home?
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced companies to send around 49.2% of their employees to work from home. Whilst the majority of employers have imposed these policies to prevent the spread of the virus, there are others who believe that remote working is the new normal of the workforce.
Workers should not be trapped in tiny cubicles or forced to stay in a small room every day of the week. Instead, remote work can benefit employees’ mental health and their private lives at the same time. Allowing an employee to change their lifestyle to remote working promotes a high production rate. Not only are they protected from the virus, but not being trapped in a cubicle, or city, means they can just keep up with their time of need. Happy employees are healthy employees.
Am I Eligible for an Accident Claim If I am Working from Home?
That where things might get tricky. Typically, when someone makes a work injury claim, it’s because they’ve actually got injured while working on site. For example, on a renovation site, an employee may get injured if they don’t operate a machine appropriately or something drops on them. When it comes to remote work, according to compensationcalculatoruk.co.uk, the organization must ensure that the employee and their position are suitable for home working.
The employer must ensure that:
- The employee home is a suitable environment for work
- Make sure the environment promotes well-being
- The employee has the appropriate equipment to ensure that duties can be undertaken efficiently and safely.
It’s important that the organization reviews the risks about whether or not a worker should be able to operate without being impeded upon. In simple terms, organizations are required to protect the health, safety, and welfare of their remote employees. A remote worker is owed the same duty of care as any other employee, while the employer must first consider if the task and the employee are suitable for home working.
Your employee has a duty of care towards you and your safety; however, the Workplace Safety regulations do not apply to a home or domestic dwelling. That’s because the employer should not have control over your own home.
Your Duty of Care as an Employee
If you’re a remote worker, you may be wondering whether or not that duty of care applies to your home. Simply because they can’t make remote inspections of your property, as this would violate social-distancing laws, they can consider whether or not the environment is suitable for work.
Remote workers, however, are required to make risk assessments to ensure they have everything they need to get on with their daily tasks. From software to office materials, anything that can maintain a healthy working flow should be in their reach. You may also want to know if you have the right amount of space to operate and avoid getting hurt – for example, a cramped office space might easily lead to a trip and fall accident. If the employer
agrees with you working from home, there is no reason why you should have to return to the office, except for the occasional odd meetings.
Is my employer liable for “accident at work damages “while working remotely?
A remote work accident claim may play out quite differently from what you expect. After all, you’re not working in an office, and you have control over your home. Thus, you need to care for your own safety. However, it is up to your organization to give you responsible advice and equipment to ensure you can get tasks completed in a reasonable way.
Your employee must ensure your working environment is clean and safe, keep your PPI and equipment with you and that you’re receiving appropriate training. But if you do fall or trip and break an arm in your own home, your employer being the one accountable for your injury would only happen in exceptional situations. For example, if the company you work for supplied you with faulty equipment and broke your arm due to it, then it would be your boss’s fault, and you could claim for recompense. The same does not apply if you’re tripping over your own chair at home while you’re getting up to make some tea – this would be your own mistake.
In other cases, if your job actually means that you have to travel a lot, you may be eligible for a claim. Yet, with a few exceptions. For instance, you may be a promoter for your organization and need to travel to different areas to do that. While you may be doing the majority of your job online, you may also be required to travel in order to promote those services and products at conventions and businesses.
If you’re leaving the country and get hurt whilst you’re on your shift, you could receive injury compensation not only from those involved in the car accident but from the company you’re working for as well.
Note that in order to be eligible for an accident at work claim, you should try to get in contact with a solicitor as shortly as possible about your claim. That way, you’re helping them to win your claim without losing any valuable evidence.