hybrid working and employer’s liability insurance

HR Solutions
06 October 2022

by Carl Vanhoutte

Hybrid working and employer’s liability insurance

Some companies already embraced hybrid work arrangements previously.  Due to the Covid pandemic, when teleworking even became mandatory for a time, acceptance of remote working has accelerated. Hybrid work arrangements, where employees alternate between time in the office and working from home, have become the future. What are the implications if your employee falls down the stairs while working from home, misses their chair or spills boiling water on themselves while making tea on their break, though?

Hybrid working and employer’s liability insurance

What exactly is considered an occupational injury?

Insurance companies have had to adapt to the changing reality of hybrid working.  An occupational injury is a physical injury incurred in the course and scope of employment. Additionally, the employment relationship must fall within the scope of the law on accidents at work.

The rule says: If an employee falls down the stairs while fetching a document they printed in the context of their work, this is an occupational injury.  If the same employee falls down the stairs because the postman rings the doorbell to deliver a non-work-related parcel, this is not an occupational injury.

Injuries incurred during an employee’s commute also count as occupational injuries and are covered by employer’s liability.  For teleworkers, this also includes travel to or from their children’s childcare or school, or to eat or purchase meals.

Recorded agreements

To simplify the burden of proof, it is important to establish written agreements for such teleworking arrangements.  It can also be useful to note working hours and locations in your communications with teleworking employees.  

By now, many insurers’ policies include automatic cover for teleworking, as well as expansion options for postings abroad, seminars and conferences and recreational and cultural activities organised by the employer.  

Want to be sure your insurance still fits your current needs? Contact your account manager.