Wondering if You’re Eligible for Worker’s Compensation?

Worker’s compensation is a mandatory form of insurance employers must provide to protect workers should they suffer injury or disease at work. Any business that employs people on a full-time basis is subject to this provincial requirement. It doesn’t matter whether the contract is oral or written.

Every industry will have different rules for domestic employees but as long as you are employed, you stand to benefit from this insurance. If you suffer a workplace injury or disease, this worker’s compensation insurance will give you weekly benefits, cover hospital expenses, medical benefits, and pay for rehabilitation services should they be necessary.

Injured worker - is he eligible for worker's compensation?

Of course, certain steps must be taken to ensure that you qualify for workers’ compensation benefits which include:

Medical care

A compensation lawyer can help you to get workers’ compensation insurance to pay for hospital bills and other medical expenses. The rules will vary by state. However, medical care generally includes doctor visits, surgeries, and medication. In some cases where equipment like wheelchairs may be necessary, the insurance may also cover the costs.

Be sure to find out beforehand whether your state offers compensation to cover other services such as pain therapy, counselling, and acupuncture. Note that you will always need to get authorisation in advance except for emergency care. Get the help of motor accident lawyers if you think you might need treatment following an accident.

Rehabilitation benefits

Rehabilitation benefits cover any therapeutic or medical care like physical therapy that you might need. This includes specialized services that will help you cope and recover from your injury. For example, compensation insurance may cover rehabilitation care needed to regain motor function after an accident before you can return to work.

If you are unable to return to your former job because of the injury or disease, some states will allow you to receive vocational rehabilitation benefits. Consider consulting with a compensation lawyer in Sydney, or your particular state to help you. Similar benefits may cover training expenses to help you to qualify for a different job.

Disability benefits

If your workplace injury or illness makes it impossible to work, you can likely get compensation benefits. They will be divided into four categories depending on how severe your disabilities are. A temporary disability will mean that you are compensated for the amount of time until you’re fully recovered.

A temporary partial disability may stop you from doing your job for a while, but you can do another job. In most states, you will get compensation to make up for the difference in earnings. Alternatively, you may have a permanent partial disability that doesn’t allow you to work at the same level as you did before the accident. In most cases, the states will limit how long you get paid for the difference in earnings.

The most complicated disability coverage is a permanent total disability. Here, the damage is so bad you can never return to your job. In general, you will need the help of a lawyer to receive total permanent disability benefits. Note that for all cases, what you are paid depends on your earnings before the injury.

Man in wheelchair
Image Credit: Honza Soukup/Flickr

Death benefits

Sometimes an employee may die following a work-related illness or injury. Their relatives will receive some form of compensation benefits, as long as they’re classified as dependants. In some cases, following a car accident, for example, funeral expenses are covered but you will need the help of motor accident lawyers. Most states have the benefit calculated as a percentage of what the worker was earning.

How a lawyer can help

In case of the death of a worker, the relationship between you, the dependent and the worker can be a legal issue. A compensation lawyer in Sydney can help you to clear it up. In other cases, you, the injured, may have issues proving eligibility for compensation. The attorney, with experience in your state’s laws can help you to deal with the matter.

Note that each workers compensation case is unique. This means that the legal process will be different for each situation. This is perhaps the most important reason you need an attorney. You can’t just read up on the issue and proceed on your own. If you want to learn more about workers compensation, contact your local compensation lawyer.