Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 1332 18
M. Crystal
  • In the course of employment (lunch)
  • In the course of employment (parking lots)
  • Right to sue

The defendant in a civil case applied to determine whether the plaintiff's right of action was taken away.

The plaintiff left his office at about 11:30 am, and was walking in a municipal parking lot on his way to his vehicle, when he slipped and fell. The plaintiff was proceeding home for lunch, as was his usual practice. After lunch, he would go to see clients before returning to the office.
The plaintiff's lunch break involved activities beyond merely obtaining sustenance from eating food. While at home, he would also exercise on a treadmill and watch some television. Such activities were not reasonably incidental to employment. Further, the accident did not occur on the employer's premises but, rather, in a municipal parking lot. In addition, although the plaintiff's employment required him to travel to visit potential clients, the plaintiff had not begun that activity at the time of the accident. He was going home for his lunch break; this was not required as a condition of his employment.
The plaintiff was not in the course of employment at the time of the accident. His right of action was not taken away.