There can be an overwhelming number of things to do after you’ve been injured at work. Whether that injury was because of an accident or exposure to a toxic substance, employees should be covered by their employer’s workers’ compensation policy. Not everything is clean cut, though. Sometimes employers don’t have insurance or their insurance company refuses to pay the full compensation you are due. It’s good to know your rights and how to handle these situations before the accident even happens.
Are All Employers Required to Have Insurance?
Not all states mandate workers’ compensation insurance. Some states don’t require any, while others let businesses with a small number of employees skate by without it. You can always ask your employer to see their insurance policy. This not only tells you what to do if you get injured, but it can reveal a lot about the company you work for.
Does Workers’ Compensation Cover Volunteers?
Workers compensation only covers designated employees, which does not include volunteers or even contract positions. Despite this, employers that use many volunteers have options for covering expenses if volunteers get hurt. This can include General Liability Insurance, Volunteer Accident Medical Insurance, and Waivers or Hold Harmless Agreements. If you volunteer, see if the employer has coverage before beginning work.
What Qualifies You for Workers Comp?
Getting hurt on the job doesn’t guarantee you workers’ compensation. There are several qualifications you must meet to file a successful claim. You must be considered an employee by the company and your injury must have occurred while on the job. It still counts if you are out of the office or working at home. Finally, you must meet state deadlines for reporting the accident and filing the claim. If you miss these deadlines, you cannot make a claim, no matter how serious the injury.
What Are Benefits of Workers Comp?
Workers’ compensation covers several costs. In addition to medical bills, it can pay you the wages you would have earned while you are out of commission. Depending on the state you live in, it could cover you up to several years. If you have a permanent disability, there are no time limits for collecting compensation.
Can the Insurance Company Investigate You?
An insurance company has the right to investigate you after you make a claim. They can take pictures of you in public, follow you, and use social media posts as proof that counters your injury claim. If you feel your rights are being obstructed, contact a lawyer, like a workers’ compensation lawyer from Hickey & Turim, to discuss your case.