A French court ruled that a man who died due to a heart attack after having sex on a business trip in 2013 was in a work-related accident, making his company liable, The New York Times reported on Thursday. The employee had reportedly travelled to the Loiret region of central France as a security technician for rail engineering company, TSO.
The man, identified as Xavier, purportedly had sex after a working day before returning to his hotel. He died later after suffering a heart attack, said to be brought on due to the encounter.
A health insurance fund decided that the employee’s death occurred in a work-related accident. However, the company appealed against it saying that the man had interrupted the business trip for an adulterous relationship, acting out of the company’s purview.
The Court of Appeal in Paris upheld the insurance company’s decision in May, but the case was publicised only last week after French lawyer Sarah Balluet posted about it on LinkedIn.
According to French law, an employer is responsible for the death of an employee on a work trip. The health insurance provider had argued that sexual activities were as normal as “taking a shower or a meal”. It also said that the company was obligated to provide social protection “over the whole time of his mission” no matter the circumstance, according to BBC.
French lawyer Aurélien Boulanger said that the court’s ruling was not entirely surprising as extraordinary cases such as an employee being stung by a wasp was also considered a work accident. After it is ascertained that an incident was caused during time spent on working, it was up to the employer to prove that the accident was not work-related.
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