Have you been injured at your place of employment? Are you struggling to understand the requirements to get workers’ comp? Workers’ Compensation Insurance guidelines can feel like a maze, but it’s important to understand the rules so you can receive compensation for your expenses related to the injury.
Understand the eligibility rules for Workers’ Compensation:
- What does Workers’ Compensation cover? Workers’ compensation is designed to help you if you’re hurt or become sick because of your job. The compensation can cover your lost paychecks and medical bills that you incur due to the injury.
- In order for you to receive Workers’ Comp benefits, your employer must carry Workers’ Compensation insurance.
- Do all employers have Workers’ Compensation Insurance? If you’re a federal employee, you’re covered. If you’re not a federal employee, your employer may or may not be required to have the insurance, as this aspect is subject to the laws of your state. State rules vary. Check your state’s website to find out if your state requires the insurance.
- Even in states that don’t require employers to carry Workers’ Compensation Insurance, most employers have this coverage because it protects them from personal injury lawsuits from injured employees.
- An employee with an on-the-job injury can sue their employer for an almost unlimited amount in some states if the employer doesn’t carry Workers’ Compensation insurance.
- Employee rules. To qualify for this compensation, you have to be an employee of the company where you got hurt. Freelancers, consultants, volunteers, and independent contractors don’t qualify for workers’ compensation.
- Work requirements. Workers’ compensation is designed to help those who have been hurt while doing their jobs.
- Your injury has to happen while you’re at work and doing the duties of your job. “At work” also includes off-premises work that you do for your job, such as performing work at client sites or other work-related sites.
- Workers’ Comp doesn’t include injuries that happen outside of work hours, when you’re “off the clock.”
- You may not qualify for Workers’ Compensation if you fall into the exemption category.
- Are you a domestic worker such as a babysitter? Are you a seasonal worker who only shows up a few times a year? These types of categories are considered to be exemptions, and you won’t be able to get compensation.
- Temp agencies. If you work for a temporary agency and are hurt at one of the jobs they offer, the rules can vary. Depending on your location, you may or may not qualify for workers’ compensation, as this is another area regulated by state law.
- Medical rules. It’s important to be diligent about following your company’s safety guidelines. If you aren’t following the safety rules when you get injured, then you may not get the compensation.
- Pre-existing conditions might be covered. Did you get injured at work and had a previous back injury? If your job makes the preexisting condition worse, then the compensation may apply. Rules can vary based on your health and work.
- The compensation can also apply to mental health issues, as well as physical. If you have mental health challenges after a trauma or other event at work, you may be eligible for the compensation. Stress and depression might also be covered.
Workers’ Compensation is valuable to your financial security if you get hurt at work. Understand the rules for your state so you can receive the benefits you deserve.