Domestic Workers – benefits applicable to domestic workers in terms of the COID legislation

Domestic Workers – benefits applicable to domestic workers in terms of the COID legislation

Business, COIDA, Human Resources, Legislation

Following a landmark ruling by the Constitutional Court, which ordered that domestic workers be included in and protected by the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act (COIDA), revised rules were published in Government Gazette No. 44250 on 10 March 2021.

This Gazette confirms that domestic workers will now be afforded cover by three main compensation measures as determined by the COIDA. These include:

  • Temporary total disablement, when an injured employee is booked off for four days or more by a treating doctor to recuperate from the injuries or condition. The maximum period payable is 24 months.
  • Permanent disablement lump sums, which are paid on a medical report indicating that the employee has reached maximum medical improvement, limited to 30% of the benefit.
  • Permanent disablement pensions, which use the same criteria as lump sums, but can run to 100% of a benefit payment.

Benefits, and minimum and maximum compensation limits, are based on the type and extent of an injury or disability.

The Compensation Fund will cover “reasonable” medical expenses following on-the-job incidents. If the employee requires chronic medication, as a direct result of an injury or illness contracted while at work, the Compensation Fund will cover these costs too. The Compensation Fund will also pay for assistive devices such as wheelchairs and prosthetics, along with rehabilitation, reintegration and return to work programs.

Funeral expenses are payable to dependents of a deceased employee. If the death occurred before April 2019, funeral expenses already incurred by the dependents will be refunded up to a defined maximum. For those who died after 1 April 2019, the benefit is R18,251 paid as a lump sum.

Surviving spouses will be paid compensation which includes either a once-off lump sum award or pension award. A child pension is also offered, which pays children of the deceased up until the age of 18. This pension may be extended for children who are still going to school after turning 18 years.

If there is no surviving spouse or child, a wholly dependency award may be granted to the parents or siblings of the deceased employee who were dependent on the income of the deceased employee.