Every day, hundreds of people get injured in their work throughout the country. According to the State Occupational Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities (IIF), in 2019, the rate of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses among private industry employees was 2.8 cases per 100 full-time equivalent workers. Private industry workers incurred 2.8 million injuries or illnesses in 2019.
Under the worker’s compensation law, employers are required to purchase insurance that provides a range of benefits for their workers if they get seriously injured or ill due to the nature of their jobs.
With the worker’s compensation, both parties come to a good compromise. The injured worker can get benefits regardless of who was at fault. At the same time, employers can avoid expensive lawsuits from injured employees that seek financial compensation for the pain and suffering their injuries caused.
If you have been injured on the job and wish to seek compensation for your injuries, workers’ compensation lawyers are there to help you. A workers’ compensation claim can be confusing for people who aren’t knowledgeable about the law. Workers’ compensation lawyers can serve as a helpful legal guide for them during this difficult time. Check Arash Law for more.
If you wish to learn how to deal with workplace injuries and understand how workplace compensation works, keep reading as we will be giving you an easy-to-digest comprehensive guide.
How does a worker’s compensation claim process work?
Each state follows its statute of limitations when it comes to filing personal injury claims. It can range from a couple of months to two years, depending on where you live. This is why it’s best to get help from an attorney immediately after getting injured.
What should I do after being hurt on the job?
The first thing you should do after getting injured on the job is to tell your boss, manager, or supervisor about the injury. You must report the accident in full detail, tell them when the accident occurred, including the time, how it happened, and how you are feeling. After reporting it to your supervisor, of course, getting medical attention from your injuries should be your priority.
Common causes of workplace injuries
A workplace injury can be a result of normal activities or duties that are related to your job. Here are just some common causes of workplace injuries:
- Slips and falls, such as an employee slipping on ice in front of your office or slipping on a wet floor.
- Improper lifting techniques can result in an immediate injury or a repetitive stress injury, such as tendinitis.
- Car accidents occur when your employees are driving for business purposes.
But what kind of job injuries do workers’ compensation claims cover?
Generally, four work-related injuries can make the injured employee eligible for a worker’s compensation claim. Here are the following injuries that a worker’s comp usually covers:
- Any physical injury sustained on the job, including exposure to dust and toxins, hearing loss caused by the workplace, and repetitive motion injury, such as carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Preexisting conditions that are accelerated or aggravated by the workplace. A back injury is an example, even if the pain from the injury does not become apparent until later.
- At-work injuries caused by company facilities, such as a chair in the company lunchroom, and injuries sustained during breaks, lunch hours, and work-sponsored activities (such as a company picnic).
- Injuries caused by increased work duties or work-related stress that cause mental and physical strain. Employees who develop a disabling mental condition resulting from job demands and constant harassment by supervisors are included in some states. Depending on your state, mental distress caused by something other than an initial physical injury may be completely excluded from workers’ compensation.
These are just some common workplace activities that may result in serious injuries. Each industry needs to deal with its safety hazards. For example, construction workers need to be extra careful compared to employees in an accounting office.
Some of the most dangerous industries are the following
- Transportation and utilities
- Professional and business service
- Public administration
- Other services
- Wholesale and retail trade
- Leisure and hospitality
- Education and health services.
Typically, industries where large equipment and machinery is used, such as the construction or oil and natural gas industries, are more dangerous than others.
What benefits can injured employees get from a worker’s compensation claim?
Each state may provide different benefits under a worker’s compensation claim. However, here are the four basic benefits injured employees can receive through the worker’s compensation:
- Medical benefits. Medical expenses are the only type of expense that workers’ compensation will cover in full – you are entitled to coverage for all necessary and reasonable medical expenses incurred as a result of a workplace accident, including hospital stays, tests, surgeries, imaging services, equipment, health-related travel costs, prescription drugs, and doctors’ visits.
- Benefits upon death fortunately, the vast majority of workplace accidents in California do not result in death. When a worker is killed in an accident, a surviving spouse or child, or other beneficiaries, may seek death benefits through workers’ compensation insurance.
- Benefits for temporary or permanent disability. If you sustain a disabling injury, you may be eligible for wage replacement benefits in the form of temporary or permanent disability benefits. These benefits are only available if you are out of work for an extended period of time and are calculated as a percentage of your pre-injury wage.
- Benefits for job displacement that are not covered by insurance. Suppose you are permanently disabled and do not return to work for the same employer. In that case, you may be eligible for supplemental job displacement benefits in the form of a voucher to offset the costs of skill enhancement or new job training.