Dealing With Work-Related Injuries When You Work From Home
Many workers are dealing with a new workplace after being directed by their employers to stay home in order to help alleviate the spread of COVID-19. Twenty-four percent of those employed in 2015 did some or all of their work at home and this number is likely much higher now. Living rooms are doubling as work spaces and workers around the country suddenly have their pets and children as honorary coworkers. And as statistics indicate that teleworkers are an average of 35-40 percent more productive than their in-office counterparts, the trend toward sending workers home is unlikely to change even once things are more stable in regard to the pandemic.
However, this also brings up an important question: what happens when someone who works from home is injured in a workplace accident if the workplace is not actually at work?
One of the hardest things about getting hurt on the job is trying to educate yourself on what Florida workers’ compensation laws and rules are while trying to deal with an injury and worrying about having money to live with. This can seem even more confusing in the current climate so we are striving to offer some clarity today.
Understanding the Contrast With Injuries that Happen in a Workplace
No worker thinks of his or her home as being a workplace where injuries could occur. However, the reality is that those who telework are subject to many of the same hazards as office workers. Fortunately, working at home or at an office building is mostly the same under Florida law and that means you are likely still entitled to pursue workers’ compensation benefits. However, it is also important to understand that while these kinds of claims are not specifically excluded by Florida’s workers’ compensation statute, there is always heightened scrutiny when the employee filing the claim was injured while telecommuting from home. This is because of factors such as:
- There are likely no witnesses
- Distinguishing non-work related hazards from work-related ones can be difficult
- Unlike in many workplaces, there is no surveillance footage that can substantiate your assertions
Due to the heightened scrutiny of workers’ compensation claims in these kinds of situations, it is more important than ever that if you find yourself becoming injured while working from home, you:
- Notify a supervisor right away
- Get medical treatment as soon as possible after the incident
- Make clear to the medical provider you visit that you were hurt at home while doing work for your employer
Lastly, claims for workers’ compensation benefits always turn on the facts of the individual case and the best way to find out your legal options and secure your rights to compensation after any kind of work-related accident is to reach out to an experienced legal team.
Allow Us to Work For You.
If an on-the-job injury has had an impact on your ability to live your life and do your work, you have every right to pursue workers’ compensation benefits. In addition, you deserve the help of an experienced legal team to provide you with guided help and assist you in obtaining the compensation that you are due. As the experienced Miami workers’ compensation attorneys at Payer & Associates, we have gained extensive experience handling claims involving all types of worker injuries during our years of experience. Contact us today to begin.