Walking from your bed to the home office now counts as a commute in Germany

The German Federal Social Court’s decision came after two lower courts disagreed on whether the trip of a few feet referred to as a home-work trip.

The man, a regional sales manager working for a company identified only as “R-GmbH” was on his way to work “from his room to his home office one floor below”, when he slipped and broke a vertebra, according to a statement. issued by the court on Wednesday.

His employer’s insurance initially refused to cover the loss.

But because he was descending the stairs, for the first time that day directly at his home office, the court considered his trip to be “insured as an activity in the interests of his employer, as a home-work journey “.

Like a As a result of widespread homeworking during the pandemic, Germany’s employment law changed in June to include more home-based activities that would be covered by work-related insurance, if those activities were in the best interests of the worker. ’employer.

This change has ended what was once a very strict legal separation between family and work activities, said Killian O’Brien, professor of German law at University College London.

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Insurers offering statutory accident coverage would potentially face an increase in claims as a result of this week’s ruling, he added.

“It is because there is an increased category of activities and events that you can carry out [within the home] which will now be covered, and it seems likely that insurers will therefore have to review this decision often, ”he told CNN Business.

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