Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1(4), an employee’s injury may be compensable only if it is an injury “by accident arising out of and in the course of” the employee’s employment. However, even in a case in which an employee is injured during a non-scheduled break the employee’s claim still may be deemed compensable. A court has previously stated that where an employee is on the employer’s premises in the act of egress, even if on a break, the Workers Compensation Act will apply.
In a recent claim before the Appellate Division, an employer contended that an employee’s injury which occurred while the employee was on a break was not compensable. The employee who was allegedly attempting to repair a paper towel dispenser in the restroom argued that the injury occurred during the course of and arose out of her employment despite the fact fixing the paper towel dispenser was not among the employee’s regular job duties. The Appellate Division agreed with the employee and confirmed the ALJ’s ruling which concluded the injury occurred during the course of and arose out of the employment.