Workers compensation is definitely a good thing to have in many cases. Of course, if you are in need of it, you are probably not in the best situation, as this probably means that you have been injured at work. However, it is definitely good to have the option to get workers compensation in this situation, as no one wants to have to pay for an injury that they acquired when they were supposed to be getting paid. If you are having problems getting the workers compensation to which you are entitled, you might need to speak to an attorney.
If you want to learn more about workers compensation, it is possible that you have many questions. For example, you might wonder, how can I find the best workers compensation lawyers in my area? Where can I go to learn all about workers compensation? If I have already started the process, how do I check my workers comp claim? What are the different types of workers compensation? Do I need a lawyer for a workers comp case? It might be a good idea to talk to a workers compensation attorney if you have these types of questions, as this individual will likely be able to provide you with some valuable insight on this subject.
In a perfect world, you would never need to worry about your bills if you’d been hurt at work. That’s what the workers compensation system was set up to do, by requiring that employers carry what amounts to insurance so that employees can be covered by a no-fault system for all types of workplace injuries and illnesses. But unfortunately, things don’t always work out that simply. Here are the top five things all employees should know about workers compensation law to protect themselves at work now and in the future:
- You Don’t Need to Be an Industrial Worker for CoverageMany workers incorrectly assume that workers comp only covers industrial accidents. As long as you’re an employee (independent contractors aren’t covered), you’re covered for issues such as carpal tunnel from typing on your computer all day or asthma caused by mold growth in the office.
- You Don’t Need to Demonstrate Employer NegligenceUnlike many kinds of injury claims, workers compensation claims don’t require you to demonstrate fault or negligence. If you got the injury or illness in question while working, then you’re probably covered. There are some exceptions, such as intentionally hurting yourself at work, but they’re relatively few.
- You Won’t Get Rich off a Workers Comp SettlementAs much as some people talk about workers “milking the system,” workers compensation settlements are generally quite limited. They’ll help to cover medical costs and get you back to work, but that’s about it. It’s good to have information specific to your state on hand, both to scale your own expectations and to deflect criticism from ignorant people around you.
- You Need to Document Your Problem From the StartIf you have any sort of ongoing issue that you think could contribute to injury or illness for you or your coworkers, report it and then document any progress. This will strengthen your claim down the road.
- You Might Be Eligible for Personal Injury CompensationWhen you file for workers comp, you generally give up your right to sue your employer. But you retain your right to file workers compensation lawsuits against third parties that may have contributed. The manufacturer of faulty equipment or a construction company that did shoddy work are two good examples. If you think something like that could be at play, it’s best to talk to a personal injury lawyer; many workers compensation lawyers focus on general personal injury as well.
What else should employees know about workers compensation lawsuits or claims? Join the discussion in the comments.