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Ohio limits workers’ compensation for injuries suffered working at home

On Sep. 23, 2022, House Bill 447 regarding remote workers went into effect. According to Business Insurance, the bill limits a person’s ability to receive compensation for injuries sustained while working from home.

The bill does not mean getting workers’ compensation for remote work is impossible. However, there are specific parameters an employee must meet to qualify for coverage.

Injuries must occur during work

First, the employee must prove they received an injury while working. Since the mass movement towards remote work, workers’ compensation cases have not shown consistency. In some cases, employees received insurance coverage for tripping over their pets, while other similar instances saw the denial of compensation. Ohio aims to set a consistent worker compensation policy for remote workers.

Injuries must result from work activities

Next, the worker must establish that they sustained the injury from a work activity they otherwise would not engage in. Getting up to use the restroom or retrieve mail would not count. However, workers’ compensation might apply if the employee retrieved mail that an employer sent them and suffered an injury.

Similarly, the employee must establish they injured themselves during a work-related activity to benefit their employer. For example, an employee might walk on a treadmill while performing work-related tasks. In that case, earning workers’ compensation for injuries sustained on the treadmill might be challenging if it is unnecessary for the job.

Repetitive stress injuries do not apply to the standards of this bill. If an employer contracts carpal tunnel, insurance companies usually treat it as an occupational disease.

Receiving workers’ compensation from remote work became more complex in 2022. To earn compensation, you must prove that work-related activities caused an injury. Working at the time of the injury is not sufficient proof.