Every employee has the right to feel safe while they are on the job.
Whether a worker sits at a desk for a majority of the day or climbs up scaffolding from morning until evening, it is the employer’s responsibility to protect their workers from occupational injuries.
- In addition to taking measures to deter avoidable accidents from happening, employers are also required under state law to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
- This is a form of financial protection that indemnifies the employer when a worker who is entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits files a claim.
Who is Entitled to Receive Worker’s Compensation Benefits?
Workers’ compensation is a state-mandated insurance program that helps employees who suffered from any type of work-related injury or illness. Only employees who officially work for the company that they are filing a claim against are eligible for compensation. If an independent contractor is injured, they are not entitled to these employee benefits but may be able to seek compensation by other means. Volunteers are also not classified as employees. There are special rules in place for workers who fall into the following categories:
- Domestic workers
- Agricultural workers
- Leased and loaned workers
- Casual or seasonal workers
- Undocumented workers
Workers’ Compensation Benefits Available to Employees
There are a wide range of benefits available to workers who file a claim for a founded worker’s compensation claim. One of the great things about this form of benefit is that the determination is not dependent on the fault. It does not matter if the employer was negligent for the injury or the employee; the worker is still entitled to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits.
Anyone who is filing a workers’ comp claim or appealing a claim denial from an insurance company should be aware of the benefits that they are able to receive. There are both short-term and long-term remedies for employees who have been injured on the job or who have fallen ill. These benefits include:
Temporary Disability Benefits: This is the most common benefit paid out under worker’s compensation claims. Typically, the employee will receive two-thirds of their gross income while they are deemed temporarily disabled. Payments will end when the physician releases the employee back to work or when it’s been declared a permanent injury.
Medical Costs: Treatment for injury or illness is covered under these benefits. This includes payment for travel expenses, all doctor visits, and any expense for medical supplies or services needed to recover from the injury.
Permanent Disability Benefits: If the doctor that is treating the worker declares that the injury sustained will never completely heal, the worker will have a permanent disability claim. This generally happens after the employee has completed one year of treatment. Employees in this scenario would then file a permanent disability claim.
Death Benefits: If the worker dies, the death benefits will go to the spouse or children of the employee. This will pay for burial, funeral expenses, and lost wages for dependent children.
Anyone who has suffered an on-the-job accident knows how scary it can be to worry about income while trying to rest and heal. Workers’ compensation benefits help employees spend more of their time focusing on recovery by giving them access to treatment. It also provides peace of mind for employees who know they will be receiving at least a large percentage of their wages.