If you got injured or caught COVID-19 while working from home, will your insurance cover you? Because of the third wave of coronavirus, right now, a number of office workers are working from home (WFH). After all, crowded offices and rush hour transit are all grounds for the virus to spread. Though the number of confirmed cases is decreasing, this work arrangement will likely continue in the near future.
Today at Kwiksure, we will dig deep into what your insurance plan covers while you WFH.
If you get hurt while WFH, will your insurance cover it?
Before we answer this question, get to know Workers’ Insurance (aka. Employees’ Compensation Insurance, or the ECI). According to the Labour Department, all employers must purchase insurance for their employees. This is to bear the responsibilities of employers under the law. Aside from coverage for work-related injuries or death, ECI also offers compensation for occupational diseases and other illnesses.
How do you file claims for injuries that occurred during your WFH period? First, you must prove that this injury or illness is related to your job. Otherwise, you won’t meet the Labour Department’s conditions for cover. Filing for claims through Common Law? Then, you must have evidence that this accident is caused by your employer’s negligence before you could be compensated.
Will your insurance plan cover the medical costs if you caught the coronavirus while you WFH?
According to The Hong Kong Federation of Insurers’ Response to the Novel Coronavirus, COVID-19 is not an occupational illness covered by the ECI. That being said, if the employee, unfortunately, caught the virus, and meets the terms and conditions for “sustaining an injury as a result of an accident arising out of and in the course of employment”, then you can certainly file for claims with your insurer. However, the final verdict is up to the court.
Home insurance claims
Getting infected by the virus while WFH is not in the home insurance coverage area. Home insurance mainly covers electronic malfunctions, property loss and damage while moving houses, home liability protection...etc. However, if thefts happen during your WFH period, some insurers are open to compensate for your loss.
On the other hand, you can file for claims for any injuries resulting from accidents with your insurer as long as you’ve bought accident insurance. This is the case whether it is a work-related injury or not. Most casualties or disability compensation is around $1 to 2 million HKD.
Work from home insurance
Recently, there are insurers who take advantage of the WFH trend. As working at an office becomes a thing of the past, Hong Kong comes up with “work from home insurance”. In fact, a number of insurers are predicted to keep these WFH countermeasures even after COVID-19.
Here are the 4 indemnities included in these plans:
- Psychological counselling fees are paid for by the insurer if an employee is diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder because they are stuck working from home.
- Ergonomics injuries, which resulted from poor posture and any other injuries caused by ergonomics.
- Any accidents that occurred at home or serious burns caused by cooking at home while WFH. Your insurance policy will compensate you on the basis of accidental death or lifelong disability.
- Work injuries sustained outside your home are also compensated.
Keep in mind that you will also be indemnified if you got hurt or critically injured while leaving your home for work.
Note: those in the manufacturing and trading industries are not insured. This includes woodworkers, plumbers, and handymen...etc. Moreover, this WFH insurance policy only provides coverage for employees - their family members are not covered.
Contact Kwiksure for more insurance solutions
In addition to home insurance, Kwiksure also provides car insurance (third-party and comprehensive insurance), motorcycle insurance, VHIS and more. Get an obligation-free quote with our online quotation system today! If you wish to chat with us, please contact our expert insurance advisors. They are happy to provide you with unbiased advice and help you find the best home insurance plans for your needs!