Workers compensation will cover all and any kind of injury sustained while at work. This includes any sickness contracted while at work or any harmful side effect caused by long-term exposure to dangerous chemicals or demanding conditions. Here are a few common examples of injuries covered:
- Broken bones due to falls
- Carpal tunnel due to typing on computers
- Hearing loss from operating heavy machinery
Basically, if the injury or ailment is caused by the work or the conditions around the workplace then it is usually covered. If you were traveling because of a work related errand (transporting goods, delivering documents, etc.) then that will be covered as well.
A good rule to remember is that you should always inform your employer as soon as you are injured and plan to file for workers compensation; it’s a requirement actually. It would also be in your best interest to consult a lawyer that specializes in workers compensation claims at your earliest convenience. All the more so if you think your claim will be contested either by your boss or the insurance agency. It won’t be hard to find a lawyer that’ll give you a free consultation. You might not even be at any risk since most lawyers are required to operate on contingency, which means you won’t need to cover any legal fees if you don’t reach a satisfactory settlement.
As soon as you report your injury to your employer, you will be given an employee claim form. Should your claim ever be challenged, you’ll find yourself having to settle the matter in court. If everything goes smoothly, you can expect up to a maximum 66% of your normal salary tax free so it’s quite likely you end up with as much income as you normally receive. Medical expenses are covered too, to minimize your burden.
In some instances, usually for those on long-term disability, you may be offered a settlement. Before accepting a settlement, you should consult your doctor and lawyer to make sure you are prepared for the future. Medical expenses may continue for a long time so make sure you consider your options before abandoning your compensation plan in exchange for a lump sum.
An important part of the worker’s compensation claim is going through an independent medical examination or IME. This involves a medical checkup conducted by a doctor working for the insurance company to help determine the compensation offer. It would be a good idea to consult with an attorney at law about what to expect here and prepare your answers ahead of time. Take note of what the doctor says so you can scrutinize it with your lawyer should you feel the need. If you feel that the compensation offered is inadequate, then the only way to get around this would be to get help from your lawyer and make a proper appeal.