Injury caused by conflict in workplace

Injury caused by conflict in workplace
Conflict in workplace is common, but when the level of conflict gets to a point which parties are getting physical, resulting injuries, legal proceedings can get complicated for both employers and employees.

This case involves three employees. Employee A hurt employee B in a fight during the lunch break. Subsequently, employee B hurt employee A in office after lunch as in rage and revenge. When the manager tried to break up their fight, he was also hurt by employee B.

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Question: can all three employees obtain employees' compensation in this situation?If an employee sustains an injury or dies as a result of an accident arising out of and in the course of his employment, his employer is, in general, liable to pay compensation under the Employees' Compensation Ordinance, even if the employee might have committed acts of fault or negligence when the accident occurred.

Employee A

Although employee A was hurt by employee B at work in office, employee A could not claim any employees' compensation as this was motivated by revenge. As this was not an injury caused as a result of his employment, the employer is not liable to pay employees' compensation.

Employee B
In this situation, the injury was sustained at lunchtime and not while at work. Although employee B was hurt, no employees' compensation can be claimed.

The Manager

However, the employer has a responsibility to pay employees' compensation to the manager. His injury was sustained in the course of employment, because he was hurt whilst executing his responsibility to stop the fight at the office.

Indeed, employee is liable to pay compensation if the employee is considered to have been injured in an accident arising out of and in the course of the employment under the following circumstances:
  1. While travelling as a passenger to or from their place of work by a means of transport operated or arranged by their employer (except as part of a public transport service);
  2. While travelling by a direct route between their residence and their place of work for the purpose of and in connection with their employment by driving or operating a means of transport arranged or provided by their employer;
  3. While travelling by a direct route from their residence to their workplace, or from their workplace back to their residence after work, four hours before or after working hours on a day when a Typhoon Signal No. 8 or above or a Red or Black Rainstorm Warning is in force;
  4. While travelling for the purpose of and in connection with his employment, by any means of transport permitted by his employer, between Hong Kong and any place outside Hong Kong or between any other such places outside Hong Kong.
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On the other hand, the employer is not liable to pay compensation if:
  1. the injury does not result in permanent incapacity or incapacitates the employee from earning full wages at his normal work;
  2. the injury is self-inflicted;
  3. the death or incapacity results from an injury (including a specified occupational disease) which the employee has falsely represented to his employer that he was free from; or
  4. the injury is caused by an accident directly attributable to the employee's addiction to drugs or alcohol and does not result in death or serious permanent incapacity.

Disclaimer: This article serves as the provision of general information and reference only. It is not intended to be served or interpreted as any legal advice in any occasion, at any cost. Please seek professional help if you have any relevant legal issue.

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