Navigating the world of workers' compensation can be tricky. These frequently asked questions may address some of your biggest concerns.
Why would my employer dispute my claim?
Employers are forced to pay a premium in order for workers to receive compensation. When an injured employee files a claim, the employer may be forced to pay a higher rate. This is especially the case if you require surgery or have a very severe injury.
This money is the reason why plenty of employers will investigate an injury, trying to determine if it even exists. Your employer may try to have your claim denied based on the lack of serious injury, the idea that your injury did not occur at work or that you don't need time off of work.
What should I do if I receive notice that my claim is denied?
The first thing you should do is get in touch with your lawyer. You may then get in touch with the insurance carrier your employer uses. You and your lawyer can request a special hearing.
Is my employer allowed to retaliate against me for filing for workers' compensation?
Laws regarding employer retaliation differ from state. Your lawyer will understand the specific laws regarding your state's retaliation claims. In the event that your lawyer finds that you have been discriminated or retaliated against, you may file for legal action. The employer may be required to pay a state fine and you may file a lawsuit to obtain the earnings you missed out on.
I am now allowed to return to work on light duty. Does my employer have to give me a position?
Again, this depends on your state of residence. Most states do require that an employer take on an employee who can return to light duty. The worker must be able to return to an equivalent position, provided that such a position is vacant. You might find that your employer does not have a light duty position available. While this could be a genuine statement, many employers do not offer a light duty position simply because they do not want to have to pay out the funds.
Who pays for me to receive workers' compensation?
State employers pay for the workers' compensation benefits you receive, but the way payment occurs depends on your state. Some states collect premiums through an insurance program, some employers pay straight to their insurance companies and some companies pay directly to employers.
Can I sue my employer and file for worker's compensation too?
Depending on your location, you may only be able to file an eligible lawsuit in one of a few different circumstances. For instance, if your employer has intentionally caused you harm, you could file a lawsuit. Careless action may not qualify. You may also file if your employer has no workers' compensation insurance.
Still have questions about workers' compensation? A lawyer might be your best bet. You might even realize you have options you never even considered.