As someone who’s employed, you’ve probably at least heard about workers’ compensation. You may understand it’s some type of benefit, but that may be all you know. The following are five common questions and answers about workers’ comp to help you understand more.
1. What Is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ comp is a type of insurance offering benefits to individuals who work for the company that holds the policy. The benefits are solely for injuries acquired during the course of the individual’s job. Most employers are required to purchase workers’ comp, and the benefits are for the employer as much as the employees.
2. What Types of Injuries Qualify?
Most injuries that are sustained while someone is working will qualify for workers’ comp coverage. If someone is out making deliveries for his or her boss and is hit by another driver, that would most likely qualify. If an employee slips and falls on a wet floor in the bathroom, that would probably qualify as well. Exposure to chemicals or other dangerous substances, as well as hazards specifically related to the type of job someone does, would also qualify someone for workers’ comp if they become ill or injured.
3. What Damages Can Be Recovered?
When someone is approved to receive workers’ comp, they may receive various damages. Medical expenses are an obvious one, but it doesn’t just include the immediate costs. If the individual will require follow up care or ongoing care, those medical bills are considered as well. Lost wages are also included in damages you may be able to recover, and if your loved one died as a result of a workplace injury, you could recover funeral and burial costs.
4. Who Pays for Workers’ Comp?
Workers’ comp coverage does not come out of your paycheck like health insurance or other benefits. Your employer purchases the coverage from a workers’ compensation insurance company and the employer pays the premiums every month. If someone is injured at work, those premiums would go up, which is why some employers may try to pay the employee off, but that’s something you should never agree to as an injured employee.
5. How Do I File a Claim?
The first thing you should do is report your injury to your employer. It’s best done in writing, but verbally could work as well. Your employer then has a responsibility to report it to the workers’ comp board in your state, but you may want to follow up to ensure that gets done. The employer files the claim, but there are some reports that the injured worker may need to collect and get filed as well.
Getting injured at work can be incredibly frustrating, and you deserve compensation to get through it. To learn more or to get started with a claim, contact an attorney, today.