The employee of a temporary employment company was the victim of an accident in the course of carrying out work for one of his employer’s clients. Responsibility for the accident was assumed, under occupational legislation, by the primary health insurance fund and the employee was granted an annuity. Since the accident has been recognised as due to inexcusable fault on the part of the employer, the employee is seeking compensation for various counts of damage.
The Limoges Court of Appeal granted the employee a sum on the basis of his sexual impairment and another as compensation for his temporary incapacity.
The primary health insurance fund, the temporary employment company and the client company appealed to the Supreme Court. They maintained, in particular, that the sexual impairment formed an integral part of the count of “loss of enjoyment of life” and that the employee could not claim two separate counts of compensation.
The Supreme Court dismissed the appeal.
It stated that “the provisions of article L. 452-3 of the Social Security Code, as interpreted by the Constitutional Court in its ruling No. 2010-8 QPC of 18 June 2010 did not constitute an obstacle for a victim of an occupational accident or illness, in the case of inexcusable fault on the employer’s part and regardless of an increase in the annuity paid to him or her, to applying to the social security court to have the employer ordered to compensate not only the counts of damage listed in the abovementioned legal text but also any damage not covered by Title IV of the Social Security Code.”
The Supreme Court held that the sexual impairment and temporary incapacity were not among the counts of damage covered by Title IV of the Social Security Code and that compensation for them was lawful (Supreme Court, Second Civil division, 4 April 2012, No. 11-14311 and 11-14594).
In a judgement delivered the same day, the Supreme Court specified that in the case of an occupational accident, medical, surgical, pharmaceutical and ancillary expenses, transport expenses and in general the expenses deriving from functional re-adaptation, occupational rehabilitation and the redeployment of the victim come under the counts of damage expressly covered by Title IV of the Social Security Code, for which the victim cannot seek compensation from the employer (Supreme Court, Second Civil division, 4 April 2012, No. 11-18014).
Nor may the victim claim compensation on the basis of his or her permanent incapacity (Supreme Court, Second Civil division, 4 April 2012, No. 11-15393).