Accident While Working From Home –

Suppose you work from home for a day. You need to get something from the printer downstairs. As you’re walking down the stairs, you trip.

You suffer a broken leg, multiple bruises, and a concussion. Oh dear. What now? Are you entitled to compensation after an accident while working from home?

Duty of care of the employer

The employer has a duty of care towards his employees. You can find this in the law, in Article 7:658 of the Dutch Civil Code. The duty of care means that the workplace must be designed as safely as possible.

Safety instructions should also be given to prevent an accident from happening in the workplace. This applies not only to the workplace on the company floor but also to the ‘home office’.

Safe home workplace: employer’s responsibility

Due to the duty of care, employers must actively ensure an ergonomically designed, safe home workplace. Consider providing a good desk, a suitable office chair, screens, a keyboard and a mouse. The judge already determined this in 2006.

In addition, employees must be given sufficient information about setting up a good home workplace. For example, consider special working-from-home regulations. Maybe you have that at work too.

Despite all these measures, which are taken with the right intentions, the employer is often still responsible if something happens to you while working from home…

Liability for accidents while working from home

According to the rules of employer liability (think of the duty of care we just talked about), the employer is almost always liable in the event of an industrial accident, which also includes accidents while working from home. “Liable” means that the employer must compensate for your injury. Fortunately, employers are usually well-insured for this.

The employer is not liable for personal injury when working from home if it can be shown that he has done everything to prevent the accident. In practice, this rarely works. The employer is almost always responsible for the damage in the event of an industrial accident.

When is something a ‘work-from-home accident?’

An example of a work-from-home accident is an employee who falls through a bad chair and sustains a back injury.

It is required that the accident occurred during the performance of the work. If you walk down the stairs at the weekend to have breakfast downstairs, this is not an industrial accident and the employer is not liable.

When you walk down the stairs to grab a printout for work, this is an accident that occurred during the performance of your work. Sounds logical, but the distinction is important for the question of whether you are entitled to compensation The employer is not always liable even if there is an accident during the performance of the work.

In some everyday accidents, the so-called home, garden, and kitchen accidents, the employer may not be liable. Mr. Inkie Stoop wrote an article together with Mr. Yorick Boendermaker in Settlement of Personal Injury about when an employer is or is not liable in these types of cases. You can read the article by clicking on this link.

Difficult to prove

To be entitled to compensation, you as an employee must prove that your injury occurred while working from home. In other words, in the performance of your work. That can be difficult. After all, no one from the company was there. That is why it is wise to talk to the employer immediately after an accident has occurred.

Are you dreading this? The lawyers at Wijs Letselschade are happy to help you address the employer and recover damages. Naturally, we do our best to maintain a good employer-employee relationship. You are not alone!

Wijs is ready for you

Do you have any questions about personal injury when working from home? Or are you curious about our working method? Please feel free to contact us. Leave a message via the contact form.

Read also: Would You Like to Hire a Car Accident Lawyer?

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