Workers’ compensation law mandates coverage for on-the-job injuries.
The process for filing a workers’ comp claim varies from state to state, but nearly always involves an employer, the injured employee, an insurance provider, and medical professionals.
All fifty states require employers (of a certain size) to provide workers’ comp coverage for their workers. There’s also a federal layer of workers’ compensation covering many government employees.
It is a no-fault system, designed to provide benefits to employees while protecting employers from lawsuits.
By sidestepping the court system and the need to prove fault, the entire process is considerably streamlined (when compared to other personal injury case types).
Workers’ comp edges area unit generally restricted to medical prices and partial compensation for lost financial gain (generally fifty to seventy p.c of pre-injury wages). Benefits normally don’t include compensation for pain and suffering. Serious injury cases may involve permanent or partial disability, resulting in a permanent stipend and/or a lump sum settlement.
Workers’ comp claims can include:
Aggravation of pre-existing conditions
Injuries provided on company property or at a company-sponsored project
Injuries caused by company-owned assets, like mechanical equipment
More serious cases include diseases caused by exposure to hazards, such as benzene, asbestos or silica dust. While mesothelioma is one extreme example of this, a more common example is rashes brought on by exposure to cleaning chemicals or gasoline.
Workers’ compensation typically doesn’t cover injuries resulting from horseplay at work, or injuries sustained while drunk or in an impaired state. Likewise, only a few states provide coverage for employees injured while traveling to and from work, unless transportation is provided by the employer.
The vast majority of workers’ compensation cases are streamlined, and only involve filing a claim with the workers’ comp insurance carrier. But there are times when it’s necessary to hire an attorney due to coverage limits or denial of benefits.