Employment: Work-related injuries

Work-related injuries and the relevant compensations

Most of the matters that relate to work-related injuries and their respective forms of compensation are governed by the Employees' Compensation Ordinance (Cap. 282 of the Laws of Hong Kong) ("the ECO").

Employers are liable to pay compensation for injuries that are sustained by their employees as a result of accidents that arise out of and in the course of employment.

If an employee sustains an injury in the following circumstances, then that employee is deemed to have been injured in an accident arising out of and in the course of employment, and the employer is liable to pay compensation:

  • while travelling as a passenger to or from the employee's place of work by means of transport that is operated or arranged by the employer (except as part of a public transport service);
  • while travelling by a direct route between the employee's residence and the place of work for the purpose of and in connection with employment by driving or operating a means of transport arranged or provided by the employer;
  • when typhoon signal No. 8 or above or a red/black rainstorm warning is in force, while travelling from the employee's place of residence to the place of work by a direct route within four hours before the commencement of working hours for that day, or from the place of work to the place of residence within four hours after the time of cessation of the working hours for that day; or
  • while travelling, for the purpose of and in connection with the employee's employment by any means of transport permitted by the employer, between Hong Kong and any place outside of Hong Kong or between any places outside of Hong Kong.

The ECO also applies where personal injury by accident arising out of and in the course of employment is caused to an employee outside of Hong Kong where the employee's contract of employment is entered into in Hong Kong with an employer who is a person carrying on business in Hong Kong.

Employers are NOT liable to pay compensation in the following circumstances:

  • the injury neither results in permanent incapacity nor incapacitates the employee from earning full wages at normal work;
  • the injury is self-inflicted;
  • the death or incapacity results from the injury (including all occupational diseases which are specified in the ECO) that the employee has falsely claimed to be free of to the employer; or
  • the injury is caused by an accident that is directly attributable to the employee's addiction to drugs or alcohol and does not result in death or serious and permanent incapacity.

In addition, in any proceedings under the ECO in which it is proved that the injury is attributable to the serious and wilful misconduct of the employee, or that an injury by accident arising out of and in the course of employment is deliberately aggravated by the employee, any compensation claimed will be disallowed.