Sometimes, employees in Pennsylvania spend only part of their time at the premises of employers, and the rest of the time working from home. This often brings up the question about eligibility for workers' compensation benefits in the event of an injury while working from home. In some cases, such claims can be challenging to navigate.
An example is a designer who is employed by a company but spends most of the time working in a studio at home. If this person trips over a dog in the studio or slips on the staircase on the way to the studio, will those injuries be regarded as work-related? Such a claim in another state was initially denied, but upon appeal, the court determined that the injury was work related.
The appellate court determined that the employer and employee had an agreement that work would be done at home. Therefore, hazards causing injuries will be deemed workplace hazards. It was found that the employer's failure to provide adequate work space for the employee to perform the required duties justified the worker spending work hours at home as a condition of employment.
Pennsylvania employers of individuals who have to work at home may designate specific and defined areas in which the job must be done. If injuries occur approaching or leaving that area, workers' compensation claims may become complicated. Fortunately, the help of experienced workers' compensation attorneys is available to navigate such claims on behalf of injured victims. Having a seasoned attorney to handle such a claim may lead to benefits awarded to cover medical expenses and lost income.
Source: FindLaw, "Can I Get Workers' Comp If I Work From Home?", Ephrat Livni, Accessed on Oct. 1, 2016