French court rules employer responsible for worker’s death after sex

DNY59/iStock(PARIS) — The Paris Court of Appeal made a ruling that during a business trip, an employer is liable for any employee accidents — or an employee’s death — in just about any circumstance.

Xavier, a railway construction technician, died of a heart attack while on a business trip in the Loiret province, about 60 miles south of Paris. The man was found dead at the home of a woman with whom he had just had sex.

The case dates back to 2013. In its judgment dated May 27, 2019, relayed by labor lawyer Sarah Balluet, the court ruled the death a “workplace accident,” setting a pathway for workplace compensation.

The worker’s health insurance fund (Cpam), a party in the case, particularly stressed the fact that sexual intercourse “relates to acts of everyday life like to take a shower or a meal.”

The fact that the employee had sex in a place other than the hotel room booked by his employer does not, according to the court, signify “that he had placed himself outside the sphere of authority of the employer.”

Xavier had worked for TSO, a railway construction company, reported Quartz. The company failed to sway the court with its argument that the worker’s death “occurred when he had knowingly interrupted his mission for a reason solely dictated by his personal interest, independent of his job.”

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