With so many changes to the average American work life amid a pandemic, you might wonder how your workers compensation is different if you get injured while working at home. Since you’re away from your usual work environment, does your employer’s insurance still cover you? Fortunately, telecommuters have always been covered by workers compensation insurance.
Injuries at Home
Workers compensation is meant to cover employees for injuries so long as they are working when an accident happens. It doesn’t matter who was responsible for the accident or if the employees themselves were negligent — it’s still covered by workers compensation. These terms were already built into workers compensation insurance before stay-at-home orders because many employees are still on the job even when they are out of the office.
Proof of Work
Accidents and injuries that happen at home can make it more difficult to claim workers compensation simply because you have to prove the accident happened while you were working. If you’re having trouble determining if your injury counts for workers comp, think about if you were completing an action that was for your employer and if your employer consented to the action beforehand. If the answer is yes, then you can file a workers comp claim.
Evidence of the Accident
Since you are working at home when the accident happens, it helps to have some evidence to show how it occurred. Take pictures of the scene and ask for witness statements if either is applicable. See a doctor immediately to get a report that links your injury to the accident. Ask your employer for the proper forms to fill out for your claim and turn them in as soon as possible. Waiting too long could forfeit your rights to compensation if you miss your state’s deadline to file.
Workers Compensation Coverage
Workers comp helps with any medical expenses associated with your accident and injury. If your injury causes long-term damage, you may be able to file for disability in order to have your wages covered during the time you cannot work. In the case of death, a claim can also cover funeral costs.
While the workers comp system is set up to benefit both employees and employers, sometimes employers will deny that an accident happened.