Don’t let misconceptions get in the way of claiming worker’s compensation benefits
Worker’s compensation is a benefit that workers are awarded if they get hurt while on the job and are unable to earn paychecks during their recovery period. However, there are many myths and misconceptions about worker’s compensation that you need to be aware of if you land in the position of wanting to lodge a claim. Let’s look at the 5 common misconceptions about worker’s compensation.
1) You are eligible for worker’s compensation benefits only if your injury takes place at the job site
Even though most worker’s compensation claims are lodged for injuries that occur at an employees’ primary job site, not all work-related injuries may happen there. Many workers get injured off-site while performing their job-related duties. Such injuries are also eligible for worker’s compensation. For example, you can file a claim if you were injured while commuting to a job-related appointment or client visit. You can even file a claim if you suffer an injury while attending a work-related conference. However, driving to and from your workplace is generally not considered a work-related activity apart from certain exceptions.
2) Insurance companies can make workers compensation claims a troublesome process, so why bother
After you have employed your employer for any workplace injury, it’s the responsibility of the insurer to carry out a claim investigation. Many insurance companies can make worker’s compensation claims a troublesome process, so you may think, why bother with the entire claim process. However, you should keep in mind that the insurance company is obliged to investigate the claim after an injury has been reported to them. They also need to comply with deadlines during the investigation. The best way to get around this is to engage a competent worker’s compensation lawyer to handle your claim at the earliest.
3) Filing a worker’s compensation claim may hurt your employer
Even though most employers would prefer to have a minimal number of worker’s compensation claims filed, it’s not correct to think that filing a claim may hurt your employer. The entire purpose of worker’s compensation claims is to protect employees and their employers. It benefits employees since they get replacement income. For employers, worker’s compensation insurance also protects their business as it helps businesses stay compliant with state laws. It also helps employers mitigate the chances of any employee filing a lawsuit against them for work-related injuries and covers company employees for legitimate illnesses or injuries caused while working for the company.
4) You should be a full-time employee to be eligible for worker’s compensation
It is a misconception for temporary employees to think that they need to be full-time employees to be eligible for worker’s compensation. According to a report, the chances of temporary worker injuries were between 36% to 72% greater than the chances of injuries to non-temporary workers. But, that’s not the case. You just need to be on the payroll of your employer. You can be a freelance or seasonal worker or even be a part-time employee to be eligible to get worker’s compensation if you suffer an injury while working.
5) You may be fired if you file a worker’s compensation claim
It is illegal for an employer to fire any employee who exercises his right to file a worker’s compensation claim. Even though filing a claim will not protect your job, as you will still be subject to the same termination rules as if you were uninjured, you will not be at any greater risk of being fired either.
Every employee should have a thorough knowledge of worker’s compensation insurance. This article helps you overcome common misconceptions about this type of insurance. If you need any clarifications, speak to your human resource department for more information.