If you are injured while on the job or suffer from a work-related illness, you can file a workers’ compensation claim with the help of an attorney, like New York workers’ compensation lawyer, to recover lost wages as a result of your injury. With so many employees now telecommuting or even working full-time from their home office, do the same workers’ compensation rules apply when you are injured at your home office?
Teleworking offers advantages to both the employer and the employee. The employer is not limited geographically to hiring the best people for the position, and the company saves overhead expenses by not having to provide office space for all the employees.
Employees may favor working remotely for some of the same reasons: they do not need to relocate to work for the company, or they can choose to live in an area they choose, not bound by the geographical location of the home office. Teleworking often gives the employee more flexibility with their time and the option to work when they feel they are most productive.
If so many employees are working from a remote location, does workers’ compensation apply if they are hurt while doing a work function? If you were performing duties for your employer, it doesn’t matter where you were working, the injury will probably be covered because it will be considered work-related.
Examples of injuries sustained while working outside the office include:
- Tripping over an electrical cord while working in your home office
- Falling over a dog while at an appointment at a client’s home
Claims for these types of injuries have been successful because you were doing something for your job when the injury occurred.
Other injuries such as back injuries, migraines, neck pain, and repetitive motion injuries (carpal tunnel syndrome, for example) are all conditions where you can file a claim for workers’ compensation whether your workplace is in an office or at your home.
What Do I Do if I Want to File a Claim?
First and foremost, if your injury requires immediate medical attention, seek assistance. You must seek medical attention prior to filing a workers’ comp claim. Know your state’s deadlines for filing a workers’ compensation claim. The longer you wait, your chances of winning your claim decrease as insurance investigators may consider your injury not significant enough or relevant enough to your job to file the claim sooner. Each state has specific deadlines to file the claim so be sure to know these deadlines.
You still may be required to see a doctor even if you do not feel your injury necessitates a visit because it may be mandatory in order to file a workers’ comp claim
Contact your HR department or benefits coordinator to report the injury and to obtain any paperwork you need to file. Your account of the accident or injury should be submitted in writing and should include details about your injury, how it happened, what body parts are affected, date and time of the incident, any medical attention you sought. Your company will file the report with the workers’ comp insurance company and your state’s workers’ compensation board office. The insurance company will evaluate your claim and decide the amount of benefit compensation you eligible to receive.
Thanks to our contributors from Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C. for their insight into workers compensation cases.