Court rules for overworked part-time instructor

By Korea Herald
  • Published : Jun 2, 2014 - 16:31
  • Updated : Jun 2, 2014 - 16:31
The Seoul court ruled in favor of a part-time instructor who died during a lecture in a work accident case, Monday.

The family of the 42-year-old man surnamed Lee filed a suit against the Korea Workers’ Compensation & Welfare Service, saying that Lee died while battling stress from not being named a full-time professor and juggling working hours that were double those of an average professor.

Lee collapsed after throwing up while lecturing in 2011, and died seven hours later from a cerebral hemorrhage. The part-time instructor of 13 years was teaching at three different universities around the time of his death.

The Korea Workers’ Compensation & Welfare Service denied that Lee’s condition was an occupational disease.

The Seoul Administrative Court, however, ruled in favor of the plaintiffs and ordered the Korea Workers’ Compensation & Welfare Service to pay compensation and funeral service expenses to the bereaved family.

“Lee handled 28 lecture hours weekly during the spring semester of 2011, which is 2.3 times more than that of a full-time professor,” the court said. “Drafting and grading the midterm added to Lee’s workload around the time of his death.”

The court said it factored into its decision the fact that Lee died while lecturing, his young age, and that no other reason than stress could be found for the hemorrhage.

By Suh Ye-seul  (