Workers' Compensation

Oklahoma: Parking Lot Injury Covered in Spite of Special Statute’s Language

 

 

 

 

 

 

A divided Supreme Court of Oklahoma held that a university employee sustained injuries arising out of and in the course of her employment when she slipped and fell on ice in a campus parking lot where she had been instructed to park. The majority found that the employee’s actions at the time of her injury were related to and in furtherance of the business of her employer and that at the time of her injury, the employee was following her employer’s instructions exactly. The employer argued—and dissenting Justice Winchester, joined by Justices Kauger and Taylor agreed—that the clear language of Okla. Stat. tit. 85A, § 2(13) appears to bar just such an accidental injury. Under the statute, course and scope of employment does not include, among other things:

Any injury occurring in a parking lot or other common area adjacent to an employer’s place of business before the employee clocks in or otherwise begins work for the employer or after the employee clocks out or otherwise stops work for the employer ….

The majority pointed out, however, that the parking lot was not “adjacent” to the employer’s place of business; it was in fact on the employer’s premises. The majority added that in its initial injury report, the employer had checked a box indicating the injuries had occurred on its premises.

Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is the co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).

LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance.

See Legarde-Bober v. Oklahoma State Univ., 2016 OK 78 (June 28, 2016)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 13.04.

Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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