EC insurers are invariably faced with claims where contractors
claim to be employees so as to be entitled to employees'
compensation. In a recent case under Action No.1277 of 2008 in
which our firm acted for the Respondent, the Court found no
employment relationship between the Applicant and Respondent.
Hence, the Applicant's application for employees'
compensation was dismissed with costs.
In this case, the Respondent (the Insured) hired a contractor to
renovate his home. The Applicant contended that the contractor had
absconded with the money paid for renovation. The Respondent
therefore hired him to complete the unfinished works during which
he allegedly fell from a ladder and sustained injuries. He
therefore demanded employees' compensation from the Respondent.
It was essentially a dispute on evidence.
In finding that a contract of employment did not exist and
preferring the evidence of the Respondent, the Court took into
account the following factors:
The Form 2 completed by the Applicant stating that the
"employer" was the main contractor rather than the
The police report filed by the Respondent indicating that the
Applicant was not employed by him.
The inconsistency between the Applicant's alleged earnings
given during trial vis-ŕ-vis the earnings stated in the
The failure to subpoena the appropriate witnesses by the
The above demonstrates that the Court will take into account
contemporaneous evidence, inconsistencies in the Applicant's
evidence and the absence of appropriate witnesses in determining
the credibility of a party's evidence.
In this case, we were successful in dismissing the
Applicant's claim for employees' compensation with
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