Many employers rely upon their employees to use their employee owned autos to perform some or much of their work related tasks. This approach is conducted with the understanding that when the employee goes home or is on their personal time, the usage of the car is not the responsibility of the employer, nor does it create any additional employer liability.
Well, you may want view this short read to learn how this has changed, at least for now.
Go to this link for a summary of the details California Court of Appeals Case
More than likely this case will go to the California Supreme Court, but no matter what happens, what are employers to do in the interim?
Here are some questions that concern employers:
- What about the employee who is “off the clock” who gets injured from their own actions behind the “wheel?” — Are they now going to be eligible for workers’ comp benefits?
- What if the auto accident is not the employee’s responsibility — Are they going to be eligible for workers’ comp benefits?
- Is the use of employee vehicles on company business now gone?
- Are employers now required to provide company vehicles for employee use and require these vehicles to be returned before the employee leaves work for home to reduce their liability?
- What can employers do to protect themselves?
Thanks to Marc Zimet, who brought this troubling case to our attention so that I might share it with you.
Marc is a partner of Jampol Zimet LLP, a prominent Southern California insurance defense firm.