CORONAVIRUS AND WORKER’S COMPENSATION
The following information has been provided by our insurance broker.
In some circumstances COVID-19 may be a compensable workplace injury. To be compensable, work activities must be proven to be the main contributing factor to contracting the virus. Due to the nature of viruses, it may be difficult to determine that employment was the main contributing factor. Each claim will be assessed on its individual merits.
Consideration may be given to (but not limited to):
- travel to an area with a known COVID-19 outbreak
- activities that include engagement or interaction with people who have contracted COVID-19
If an employee is diagnosed with COVID-19, they may notify the virus as an injury and seek compensation for loss of earnings, medical and treatment expenses and lump sums if it leads to a permanent impairment. If they do, there are two likely scenarios for claims:
- the employee believes the virus was contracted in the course of employment through contact with a person who has the virus or contact with virus particles on a surface;
- the employee states that the virus was contracted in the course of employment in the above circumstances and the virus has aggravated a pre-existing underlying condition.