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Can I Get Workers’ Comp While Working From Home?


Simply speaking, workers’ compensation must cover work-related injuries wherever they take place. If you sustain an injury while on the clock and/or doing something that benefits your employer, you should be covered by their workers’ compensation policy, even if you are working from home.

Getting carpal tunnel from too much typing, for example, would be work-related whether you were typing at your place of work or your home office.

In most cases, all you will need to get workers’ compensation benefits is a reasonable explanation of how your injury was work-related.

Questions to Answer

In workers’ comp claims that involve working from home, the burden of proof is on the injured remote employee. Some questions you may have to answer include:

  • Were you on the clock when the injury occurred? (this usually applies if you clock in and out or have a clearly defined schedule)
  • Was your employer benefiting from your actions when the injury occurred?
  • Did your employer require you to engage in the injury-causing activity?
  • Was your off-site activity approved?

If the answers to 1 or more of these questions are “yes,” you will likely be entitled to workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation insurance applies when your injury arises “out of and in the course of employment.”

Frolics and Detours

Sometimes, due to the nature of their environment, remote employees mix personal time and work time. If you are harmed while on the clock, working, and doing something that isn’t 100% work-related, your workers’ comp claim may be a little less certain.

Generally, employers are responsible for minor detours, which occur when the employee is momentarily distracted, but not for frolics, which are wholly separate from the employee’s job responsibilities.

For instance, if you trip over something while you are on the phone for work and walking to your kitchen for a snack, you will probably be covered, but if you are harmed while making an elaborate meal, you may not be covered.

Details Matter

Although your employer and their insurance company are unlikely to deny your claim, the workers’ compensation system does not always work perfectly. If you are having trouble receiving benefits, our attorneys at Pierce, Sloan, Kennedy & Early LLC can take a closer look at the details of your case and help you prove your claim.

Call us at (843) 968-0886 to schedule a free consultation or get started by sending us an online message today.