Do You Qualify for Workers’ Compensation?
A work-related accident or illness can occur in a number of ways. Common causes include slipping and falling, lifting heavy objects and exposure to toxic chemicals, to name just a few. Workers’ compensation is a state-mandated insurance program that provides benefits to employees who experience an illness or injury through the course of their employment.
Benefits can include replacement of lost wages and medical treatment for the injury or illness. In exchange for receiving these benefits, employees relinquish the right to sue their employers.
What Are the Eligibility Requirements for Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
Workers’ compensation procedures and laws can vary from one state to another. In general, you must be classified as an employee of the organization — as opposed to an independent contractor — in order to be eligible for benefits. The accident or illness must also be work-related. However, this does not mean the incident must occur on the jobsite. For instance, if you’re injured while traveling on company business, you would likely be eligible to receive benefits. However, you may not be eligible for benefits if you were injured in an accident while driving to or from your place of employment.
It’s important to note that fault is not a determining factor for qualifying for workers’ compensation benefits. You can be eligible even if a work-related accident was your fault, the fault of a coworker or customer, or no one’s fault at all. However, you may not qualify for compensation if your injuries are self-inflicted or occur when you violate a company policy or another law.
Timely filing of a workers’ comp claim is essential. Each state has a designated time frame for filing a workers’ compensation claim. In general, prompt filing may increase the likelihood of a favorable outcome.
When Should You Consult With a Workers’ Compensation Attorney?
As workers’ compensation insurance is completely funded by the employer without employee contributions, employers and their WC insurance providers are often reluctant to pay out benefits. They may also try to reduce the amount of compensation or the duration of the payment period. Consider contacting a knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorney at Ritacco Disability Law if you feel your company has unjustly denied or limited your benefits — or mishandled your claim in any way.
Contact the Law Office of Lisa M. Ritacco for Help With Your PA or NJ WC Claim
Workers’ compensation attorney Lisa M. Ritacco may be able to assist you in receiving benefits. Our team represents clients in workers’ compensation claims throughout PA, from Philadelphia to Harrisburg, as well as New Jersey. Contact us today if you need a knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer in Harrisburg, Doylestown, Reading, West Chester, Moorestown, NJ, or anywhere in between.