Actual-Risk Test Law and Legal Definition

Actual-risk test refers to a doctrine which states that to become entitled for a worker’s compensation an injured employee must prove the following :

that the injury arose from the employment ;

that the injury occurred in the course of employment; and

the scope of employment.

In S T G v. Tooks, 2001 Va. App. LEXIS 329 (Va. Ct. App. June 12, 2001),the court observed that “under the actual risk test, the employee must establish that he was at greater risk of injury as a result of his employment than the general public. In order to prevail, the employee must prove a causal connection between the manner in which the employer required the work to be performed and the resulting injury”.

In addition, the court in Lucas v. Lucas, 212 Va. 561 (Va. 1972) observed that, “Virginia has adopted the actual risk test, which requires only that the employment expose the workman to the particular danger from which he was injured, notwithstanding the exposure of the public generally to like risks”.