Horseplay at work: If a worker is injured at work from horseplay, is the claim compensable? If an employee participates in horseplay or instigates it, then the claim is not compensable. However, if the worker is an innocent bystander but is injured when others are engaged in horseplay, then the claim is most likely compensable.
Examples of Alabama cases found not compensable: wrestling in the break room during lunch; hanging on the underside of a crane for a ride across the work yard; jumping up to touch the blades of a moving fan (seriously) and resting one’s head in a loop attached to a malfunctioning cherry picker.
Examples of Alabama cases found to be compensable: a few cases reported where co-workers were sole instigator of horseplay that produced physical injuries or death after pinching or hitting injured workers.
The thing to remember with this area of the law: do not engage in any form of horseplay while at work! And stay away from those who do.
If you have questions or concerns about a particular incident at work, please contact us.