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Noteworthy panel decision finds going and coming rule didn’t bar shopping mall worker’s claim for injuries
An Appeals Board panel, affirming the WCJ, held that an applicant’s claim for injuries incurred on 2/18/2012 when she slipped after leaving the premises of her employment at Bath and Body Works but while still within the confines of Northridge Mall where the Bath and Body Works was located, was not barred by the “going and coming” rule.
The Appeals Board panel held that injuries are compensable if they are sustained on property provided to access the employer’s premises even if the means of access is not wholly under the employer’s ownership, control or management. Although the applicant in this case was injured in an area not owned or controlled by the employer, the mall was the only practical means of access to the employer’s premises, and the applicant was required to use the mall to enter and exit her place of employment.
The Appeals Board panel further found that the applicant’s injury occurred within a reasonable margin of time and space necessary to pass to and from the location where she actually worked. The applicant’s employment relationship with the defendant was not suspended during her walk through the mall, as she had not yet reached her regular commute for purposes of applying the “going and coming” rule, concluded the Appeals Board panel. See Haddad panel decision.
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