What is Workers’ Compensation?

Young African American guy with plastered leg sitting on sofa, leaning on crutches at home

Workers’ compensation, also known as workers’ comp or workman’s comp, is a type of insurance that is designed to protect employees who have been injured or become ill as a direct result of their employment. Workers’ comp provides employees with income replacement benefits and financial support when they are unable to work due to their injury or illness. Our EMD team is here to break WC down and explain its importance to employees and employers!

In simple terms, workers’ comp is essentially an insurance policy that is in place to ensure that employees receive medical treatment and income replacement as they heal, without having to fight against their employers. Employers are mandated to have workers’ comp for employees, though the specifics vary by state, and may not apply to independently contracted employees.

WC covers a wide range of work-related injuries and illnesses, including accidents that happen on the job, illnesses or diseases caused by exposure to substances or repetitive movements, and more. WC can also cover injuries that are a result of work-related activities outside of the workplace or while at work-related events.

Workers’ comp is a no-fault system. This means that you do not have to prove that your employer was negligent or at fault for your injury to receive compensation. This also means that if the injury was your fault, you are still eligible to receive compensation. Accidents happen! Benefits are typically paid out regardless of whose fault the injury was, as long as you were working within the confines of your job. Exceptions to this include intentionally causing an injury, willful misconduct, being under the influence, and more.

WC wasn’t just designed to benefit employees, it also benefits employers as well. It can provide employers with protection against lawsuits from injured employees. This system also works to ensure that employers promote workplace safety and safe working conditions to eliminate possible injuries.

The process of filing a workers’ compensation claim involves reporting your injury to your employer and seeking immediate medical attention. You will then need to undergo a medical evaluation from a medical provider within your employer’s insurance organization. This will determine the extent of your injury or illness and will provide treatment guidelines and time frames for recovery. With this evaluation, you will then file your claim, and once your claim is approved, you will begin to receive benefits for medical expenses and missed wages. Workers’ compensation can also cover the cost of rehabilitation services needed to recover from your injury or illness.

Choose Erwin, McCane & Daly

Workers’ compensation is an incredibly important insurance program designed to protect both employees and employers. Being injured at work can significantly disrupt your life and cause an unexpected interruption of your income. Having benefits you can turn to can help to provide you with financial stability while you heal. Contact our EMD Law team to set up a free consultation today!