#Workplace #Human Resources #Employer

Returning a Day Before Workday Counts as ‘Traveling to Work'

Mohamad Danial bin Ab Khalil
by Mohamad Danial bin Ab Khalil
Sep 20, 2022 at 11:58 PM

The Court of Appeal has ruled that a worker travelling from their hometown to a workplace located in another town is eligible for Social Security Organisation (Socso) claims. This is because it is still considered "Travelling to work".

In a landmark finding yesterday, a panel ruled that injuries sustained by N Sathiaseelan in an accident were considered an employment injury, even though it was his day off. The employment injury was cited under Section 24(1)(a) of the Socso Act 1969: 

"(1) An accident happening to an insured person shall be deemed to arise out of and in the course of his employment if the accident happens while the insured person—

 (a) is travelling on a route between his place of residence or stay and his place of work."

A three-member bench made the unanimous decision, comprising Nazlan Ghazali, Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera and Lee Swee Seng.

T Manoharan, Sathiaseelan's counsel, stated that the Court of Appeal held that the Socso Act should be interpreted liberally and expansively in the corporate social responsibility context, enabling workers to travel to their workplace on weekends from their hometowns. 


More about the case

Sathiaseelan was working as a senior technician at Infineon Technologies Sdn Bhd, located in Kulim, Kedah. He was in an accident while returning to his workplace on October 16, 2016, after spending the weekend at his home in Ipoh, Perak. 

Manoharan stated the accident caused multiple injuries, including disabilities, to the technician. Sathiaseelan applied for temporary disability claims under Socso, but his application was rejected.

He said that Socso rejected his claim because the injuries he sustained in the accident did not qualify as an employment injury under the Act. 

He submitted an appeal that was rejected by the Socso board, which reasoned that the claims were not valid as he was travelling on his day off. 

As provided for under the Socso Act, Sathiaseelan also filed an appeal to the High Court in Ipoh, but it was also dismissed. 

Finally, he filed an appeal to the Court of Appeal, which delivered its decision yesterday. 


Socso's Employment Injury Scheme

Under Socso, the Employment Injury Scheme (EIS) protects workers against accidents or occupational diseases arising out of and during their employment. 

The protection under the EIS covers:

  1. Accidents while on the job. They include accidents encountered while at work or on a business day.

  2. Commuting accidents, which include:

    1. On a route between the worker's place of residence or stay and their workplace,

    2. On travel made for any reason which is directly connected to the worker's employment, and

    3. On a journey made between their workplace and the place where they take their meal during any authorised recess.

    4. An accident that happens during any deviation or interruption is not deemed to arise out of and during the worker's employment. 

  3. Accidents during an emergency. An accident that occurs during an emergency at the employer's premises while assisting, rescuing, or protecting other people from disaster or danger during an emergency.

  4. Occupational diseases. Diseases resulting from the worker's occupation include loss of hearing due to noise exposure and occupational asthma. 

Under the EIS, claimants can receive benefits, including:

  • Medical benefit, 

  • Temporary disablement benefit,

  • Permanent disablement benefit,

  • Constant-attendance allowance,

  • Facilities for physical or vocational rehabilitation, 

  • Dependants' benefit, 

  • Funeral benefits, and

  • Education benefit. 

For more information on EIS, please visit Socso's website.


Source: Free Malaysia Today