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work related injury? California

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  • work related injury? California

    If an employee leaves their purse on the middle of their floor of their office and trips over it and hurts their back due to the fall, is it a work related injury?

  • #2
    As stupid as this sounds, I believe that yes, it is work comp. It occurred at work during work time, so unfortunately it is.

    We once had a guy that chipped his tooth (he had a loose crown) after pulling the cap off his pen at work with his mouth. My employer fought it saying that it could have happened while he was at home eating popcorn or something, but WC said since it happened at work, it's WC.

    You can certainly send it to your carrier and explain the situation. They determine for themselves what the ultimate decision is.

    Comment


    • #3
      thx. i read here once about a guy who fainted at work (he had the flu) and...

      hit his head on a cabinet on the way down and was knocked out. His employer called 9-11 and an ambulance came and got him. He filed a claim to get the ambulance ride to the hospital paid for and they denied the claim saying that it wasn't a work-related injury. It was an injury that happened at work.

      there seems to be no concrete resources out there to help figure out the difference between a work related injury and a injury that happens at work.

      Comment


      • #4
        Here's the difference.

        In the one example, the employee fainted due to the flu. His employment did not cause him to have the flu. Therefore, any associated injuries are not work related.

        In the initial example, however, the likelihood is that it will be considered work related because the purse was on the floor at the place of employment. The root cause of the injury is based on his being at work.
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

        Comment


        • #5
          And it could be seen as the employer's responsibility to provide a safe workplace for the employee's... even if the employees themselves MAKE it an unsafe workplace.
          Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

          I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

          Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

          Comment


          • #6
            If general klutziness was a defense to a WC claim, I would have a lot more time on my hands. Chances are this one would be covered.
            I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by cyjeff View Post
              And it could be seen as the employer's responsibility to provide a safe workplace for the employee's... even if the employees themselves MAKE it an unsafe workplace.
              Which is why I wish stupidity could be exempt from WC.

              Another example (not of stupidity, but of clumsiness), I know a woman who was bringing some files to another room, tripped on, well, her feet, threw her hands out in front of her to catch herself and ended up breaking both wrists. Ouch. Should she have been more careful, sure. But it was still WC.
              Last edited by JulieBean; 11-28-2007, 12:17 PM.

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              • #8
                We had an employee that was eating a popsicle (had it hanging out of his mouth) while moving household goods. He tripped and lodged the popsicle stick into the roof of his mouth. Guess What??? Yep, it was WC.
                Amateurs built the Ark, Professionals built the Titanic

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                • #9
                  Tripping over your own feet may not be WC. I've had a few denied on that basis. There usually has to be something about the workplace that caused the accident. An object on the floor would be covered, but untied show laces or unhemmed pants *may* be denied.
                  I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ElleMD View Post
                    Tripping over your own feet may not be WC. I've had a few denied on that basis. There usually has to be something about the workplace that caused the accident. An object on the floor would be covered, but untied show laces or unhemmed pants *may* be denied.
                    Too bad it's not 5 years earlier. I think her argument was that whatever she was carrying caused her to misstep or something. If you ask me, it was her feet. Ah well... you live and learn.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I read some time back (believe it was in Reader's Digest - I read a lot of magazines) that a prostitute was awarded a worker's comp. claim because she was injured when she was in a car with a client & the car plunged down a hill. It wasn't in the US & I can't remember the country (my memory isn't like it used to be). However, in that country starting a few years ago a prostitute could register as a sex worker which was a legitimate occupation & they have to pay taxes.
                      Last edited by Betty3; 11-28-2007, 10:25 PM. Reason: just realized spelled legitimate wrong
                      Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                      Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Betty3 View Post
                        I read some time back (believe it was in Reader's Digest - I read a lot of magazines) that a prostitute was awarded a worker's comp. claim because she was injured when she was in a car with a client & the car plunged down a hill. It wasn't in the US & I can't remember the country (my memory isn't like it used to be). However, in that country starting a few years ago a prostitute could register as a sex worker which was a legimate occupation & they have to pay taxes.
                        Hey Joe!!!

                        Are they unionized?

                        Where, exactly, is the union hall?
                        Not everything that makes you mad, sad or uncomfortable is legally actionable.

                        I am not now nor ever was an attorney.

                        Any statements I make are based purely upon my personal experiences and research which may or may not be accurate in a court of law.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          PLEASE let's not go down that road.
                          The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            And a couple of years ago, I read a SSC WC decision that actually made sense (although I forget what State it was.) U.S employee had been sent to Africa for six months by his employer to work there. While there, the employee chose to, um, get friendly with quite a few prostitutes and when he returned home, he was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. He filed a WC claim. Benefits were denied and the guy took it all the way to the State Supreme Court, arguing that if his employer hadn't sent him to Kenya (or wherever), he wouldn't have been with the prostitutes. The SSC ruled that it was entirely his choice to solicit sex from prostitutes and it was not worker's comp.

                            hrcalgal, just file the claim with your WC carrier and let them decide whether they are liable under your State's WC reg's. This is entirely a State-specific issue.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Beth3 View Post
                              And a couple of years ago, I read a SSC WC decision that actually made sense (although I forget what State it was.) U.S employee had been sent to Africa for six months by his employer to work there. While there, the employee chose to, um, get friendly with quite a few prostitutes and when he returned home, he was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. He filed a WC claim. Benefits were denied and the guy took it all the way to the State Supreme Court, arguing that if his employer hadn't sent him to Kenya (or wherever), he wouldn't have been with the prostitutes. The SSC ruled that it was entirely his choice to solicit sex from prostitutes and it was not worker's comp.

                              hrcalgal, just file the claim with your WC carrier and let them decide whether they are liable under your State's WC reg's. This is entirely a State-specific issue.
                              Remember that case well as I had employees all over the planet at the time. Thankfully, none of them pulled a stunt like this.
                              I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

                              Comment

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