Employers' Premises, Parking Lots, Roads, Plazas, Malls, Boundaries


Workers are in the course of employment upon entering the employer's premises at the proper time, using an accepted entrance.

Workers are not in the course of employment when they leave the employer's premises, unless for the purpose of work (see 15-02-02, Accident in the Course of Employment and 15-03-03, On/Off Employers' Premises).

Accidents on employer's premises arise out of employment, unless

  • for personal reasons, the worker used an instrument of added peril, for example, an automobile, motorcycle or bicycle. (For exceptions, see parking lots, below.)
  • the act causing the injury does not relate to work or employment obligations.


Employer's premises


The building, plant or location of work, including entrances, exits, stairs, elevators, lobbies, parking lots, passageways and private roads.

Parking lots

  • The employer must own or lease the parking lot.
  • If driving, the condition of the employer's lot must cause the accident.
  • If walking, the condition of the lot need not be a contributing factor.
  • Workers are not entitled to compensation if injured by their own vehicle.

Employer-owned private roads

If part of the worker's journey to or from work takes place on a road that is completely controlled by means such as posted notices, warning signs, or opening or closing of gates, maintenance work or snow clearing, the worker is in the course of employment while using the roadway.

The worker is not in the course of employment while using a road open to the general public.

The condition of the employer's private roads must cause the accident.

Plazas and malls

Workers are not in the course of employment in public parking areas not under the employer's control.

Workers injured in parking spaces regulated and allocated by the employer may be entitled to compensation.

Workers are members of the general public once they leave the allocated areas and remain so until they arrive on the employer's premises.

Workers have no entitlement if their injuries occur on indoor streets and walkways open to the general public and not under the employer's control.

Entitlement is allowed if accidents occur on the actual premises of the employer within the mall or plaza.

Boundaries in multi-storey buildings

The employer's premises are

  • all areas occupied solely by the employer
  • all common areas for entering or exiting the building at street level, including outside stairs to public property
  • escalators, elevators, stairs to areas occupied by the employer or common areas from a public concourse to the main floor lobby and from the lobby to the floor occupied by the employer.

When the employer occupies a portion of a floor, workers are on the employer's premises in areas designated as common to the tenants on that floor. Workers must take the most direct route from the elevator/stairs to the employer's premises.

Workers are members of the general public after leaving the allocated parking area and before reaching the areas designated above.

Workers entering the building on any but the main floor or the floor occupied by the employer, are not in the course of employment until entering the elevator/stairs leading to the floor of the employer's premises.

Cases not falling within these guidelines are judged individually, depending on the circumstances.

Application date

This policy applies to all decisions made on or after February 28, 1991, for all accidents.

Document History

This document replaces 03-02-10 dated August 9, 1991.


Legislative Authority

Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997, as amended
Section 13(1)

Workers' Compensation Act, R.S.O. 1990, as amended
Section 4(1)


Board of Directors
#8(XLI), June 10, 2004, Page 6623