In today’s dynamic work environment, more employees are working from home than ever before. This shift prompts new questions regarding workers’ compensation coverage, specifically whether it extends to employees who work from home. If an injury occurs while performing work duties at home, can an employee in Pennsylvania file a workers’ compensation claim?
In Pennsylvania, the law does not distinguish between on-site employees and those working remotely for workers’ compensation purposes. However, understanding the law can make it easier for employees to navigate the realm of remote work and potential compensation claims.
Workers’ compensation laws in Pennsylvania cover injuries that occur in the course of employment, irrespective of the workplace. Thus, if an employee suffers an injury while performing work-related tasks at home, they may qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.
Establish the work-related nature of the injury
The employee must provide evidence showing the injury occurred during work hours and while performing tasks directly related to their job. This can be more challenging for remote employees because of the lack of traditional supervision and the blending of work and personal spaces.
Document the injury
As with any workers’ compensation claim, documenting the injury and its impact on the employee’s ability to work is critical for remote employees. Medical records, photographs and notes about the incident can be crucial pieces of evidence in a claim.
Follow the reporting procedure
Remote workers should promptly report any work-related injuries to their employer, just as on-site employees would. This report should include as much detail as possible about the circumstances of the injury.
Evaluate safety standards
While employers cannot control the safety of an employee’s home, they can set guidelines for safe work practices. Employees should adhere to these standards to avoid jeopardizing their eligibility for workers’ compensation claims.
Workers’ compensation should protect employees whether they work in a traditional office setting or from the comfort of their homes.