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Can remote workers make a workers’ compensation claim?

On Behalf of | Oct 7, 2021 | Workers' Compensation

The last few years have changed how we work and from where. Telecommuting, remote work, online, virtual or digital employees are all terms used to refer to the business trend of letting workers perform their job-related tasks from anywhere where an employee has internet access. This new freedom in the work arena has allowed some workers to become what is commonly called a “digital nomad.” 

Working remotely has a profound impact on the bottom line of a business by not providing office space for their employees. A recent survey found that 55% of business executives are forecasting that the majority of their employees will continue to work a minimum of one day per week remotely for the foreseeable future. What happens if a worker suffers injuries while working remotely? Does workers’ compensation cover you? 

Factors to consider when you’re injured as a remote worker

Workers’ compensation claims can be challenging when injuries take place in a traditional in-person work environment. However, when remote workers are injured, it can be even more challenging. Here are some factors to consider when deciding if you have a valid claim:

  • Does your employer have workers’ comp?: Some employers mistakenly assume that they don’t need workers’ compensation insurance since they consider remote work low risk. 
  • Are you an employee or independent contractor?: Sometimes, companies will keep workers in an independent contractor role to avoid the liability of workplace injuries. 
  • When was the injury or illness?: For a workers’ compensation claim to be valid, the harm must have occurred while you were on the job. 
  • Where was the injury or illness?: If working from home or some other remote location, the injury must have taken place in your work environment. If you take a break from work and go for a swim and slip-and-fall, then being injured away from your work environment while engaging in non-work-related activities could invalidate your claim. 

Generally speaking, an injury or illness will give way to a valid claim if it “arises out of and in the course of employment,” regardless of where the harm took place. Georgia law requires employers to have workers’ compensation insurance even if they only have one employee.

When considering getting help with your workers’ compensation claim, don’t hesitate to reach out. Steven Morgan is a local Georgia lawyer who cares about the needs of his clients and will aggressively work on their behalf in a workers’ compensation claim. Call us today at 912-289-0640 or send us an email to discuss the merits of your case.