You may be surprised to learn that your job could be partially responsible for your accident. If you’re injured at work, it’s important to understand how workers’ compensation works and your employer’s role in the claims process. After all, your recovery journey could be a long one, and you want to make sure you can recover worry-free, which means less money stress.
Here’s what you need to know about filing a workers’ compensation claim if your job may have been responsible for your accident.
What is Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that covers employees who are injured while on the job. Benefits can include medical expenses, income replacement, and death benefits. Workers’ compensation is typically mandatory in most jurisdictions, meaning employers must provide coverage for their employees. In some cases, employees may be able to opt-out of coverage if they have other forms of insurance. Before opting out of workers’ compensation, you should always hire a personal injury attorney to help you navigate your choices and the workers’ compensation claim and discussion.
Essentially, workers’ compensation is designed to protect employees from financial hardship after suffering a work-related injury or illness. It is important to note that workers’ compensation does not cover injuries that occur outside of work or are due to the employee’s negligence. For example, if an employee is injured in a car accident on the way to work, they would not be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
With workers’ compensation helping cover the costs of medical care and lost wages, you can see why it’s so important for you to file a claim when you’re injured on the job.
Understanding How Workers’ Compensation Works
If you’re injured at work, you should report the accident to your employer as soon as possible. Your employer will then notify their workers’ compensation insurance carrier, who will begin the claims process.
In most cases, you’ll be required to receive medical treatment from a workers’ compensation-approved doctor. You may also be entitled to receive benefits for lost wages if your injury prevents you from working.
Here’s a quick overview of how it works:
- First, workers’ compensation is typically mandatory in most states. That means employers are required by law to provide this coverage for their employees.
- Next, workers’ compensation pays for medical expenses and lost wages resulting from a work-related injury or illness. It can also provide death benefits to the family of a worker who dies as a result of a workplace accident.
- Finally, workers’ compensation is typically handled by state-run programs. These programs are designed to ensure injured workers receive the care they need without suing their employers.
Remember, if you are injured at work, you need to report the incident to your employer quickly. Your employer will then file a claim with their workers’ compensation insurer. Once your claim is approved, you will receive benefits based on your injuries and how much time you need to recover. In some cases, you may be able to return to work on a modified schedule or with restrictions.
Making a Claim on Partial Responsibility
If your job was partially responsible for your accident, you might still be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, it’s important to speak with an attorney before filing a claim, as your benefits may be reduced or denied if your employer isn’t found to be at fault.
These claims can be difficult to prove, so it’s essential to consult a knowledgeable lawyer before taking action. Keep in mind that your employer may also challenge your claim. However, if you have a strong case, filing a workers’ compensation claim can help you get the financial assistance you need to cover medical expenses and lost wages.
Time Frame for Contacting Attorney
If you’ve been injured at work, and it’s pretty severe, you should contact an experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can help you navigate the claims process and ensure that you receive the full amount of benefits you’re entitled to.
If your injury is not severe, you may want to wait a bit and see how your employer handles the situation. If they seem fair and cooperative, you may not need an attorney’s help.
These are just a few tips to help you navigate how to handle your job-related injury.