Case law has recently provided an interesting illustration of the failure to recognise the occupational nature of an accident that occurred during a day of remote work.

As a reminder, Article L. 411-1 of the French Social Security Code provides for a presumption that an accident is attributable to work when it occurs “as a result of or in the course of work”. To benefit from such a presumption, case law considers that the accident must have occurred at the time and place of work.

Article L. 1222-9 of the French Labour Code states that an accident occurring at the place where remote work is carried out during the teleworker’s professional activity is presumed to be a work-related accident.


In this case, an employee working remotely was found unconscious in her home-office by her son. She provided a statement from a colleague to the effect that she always reconnected before 1:30 p.m., and indicated that she was in the room dedicated to teleworking. The employee therefore sought recognition of work-related accident.

The Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie (“CPAM”) – i.e., the French Social Security authorities – initially notified the employee of its refusal to recognise the accident as work-related. The employee contested this decision before the relevant amicable commission. Following an implicit rejection decision, the employee filed a claim before the Judicial Tribunal, which recognised the occupational nature of the accident suffered by the employee. The CPAM appealed against this decision.


In a pedagogical ruling, the Rouen Court of Appeal quashed the Judicial Tribunal’s decision, ruling that the accident was not work-related.

It considered that “An employee who wishes to rely on the presumption that the accident is attributable to work does not have to prove the link between the accident and work, but must provide evidence that the accident occurred in circumstances that comply with legal requirements. They may provide such evidence by any means, but their assertions alone are not sufficient if they are not corroborated by objective evidence“.

The Court noted that the employee had not provided any evidence that she had connected to the company network. It also considered the fact that the employee had logged on in the morning, but not in the afternoon, and that there was no mention of any communication or task carried out at that time. The Court therefore concluded that the accident was not work-related. 

This ruling clearly demonstrates the importance of expressing motivated observations when declaring an accident declared by the employee, especially when the only information available to the company is the employee’s statement.

CA Rouen, 26 April 2024, no. 23/00840