According to the Dept. of Labor, over 270,000 workers’ compensation claims have been filed from January to July of 2015. During these seven months, over nine billion dollars of compensation and medical bills have been paid. However, not every compensation process goes smoothly. That is, injured workers may face difficulties from their employers in getting properly compensated. Below explains four important facts that every injured worker should know.
Some Employers Dispute Claims
Certain employers may dispute any claim, regardless of the legitimacy or severity. This is because companies pay monthly workers’ compensation insurance premiums. Therefore, the more workers’ compensation claims filed against the company, the higher the premiums will become. As a result, many companies will discourage employees from filing claims or encourage them to go through their private insurance.
Chronic Health Problems
Many employees mistakenly associate workers’ compensation claims with sudden workplace injuries. The most commonly reported injuries are overexertion, machinery accidents and being struck by an object. However, repetitive motion injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, are legitimate workers’ compensation claims. Manual labor employees who perform repetitious motions all day are very prone to these chronic health problems. However, certain employers will suspect any injuries without a specific, sudden cause as being fraudulent.
Injured Workers’ Rights
Workers who are injured on the job are protected by both state and federal laws. However, many employers may encourage the injured employee to return to work early through their modified duty program. While this does allow the injured employee to regain life normalcy and pride in being fully employed, it also allows the company to avoid time loss related consequences. The Dept. of Labor assigns time loss percentages to companies based on the amount of time injured employees miss work. Therefore, the higher the time loss percentages, the worse it reflects on the company. As a result, certain companies will try to force the employee to return to work early.
A Professional Can Help
It is an unfortunate fact that certain employers may threaten to punish injured employees if they file a claim. Even worse, they may threaten to fire the injured employee. Therefore, any injured employee who experiences a hostile work environment, workplace intimidation or any difficulties should consult with a personal injury lawyer. In addition to this, any injured employee who is denied benefits will also need professional legal assistance. Learn more about the typical services offered by a personal injury from attorney Shawn Diederich, or research a lawyer in your particular area.
In conclusion, injured workers should be aware that certain employers will dispute claims, even if they are chronic health problems caused by work responsibilities. In addition to this, injured workers have rights and can seek the help of a personal injury lawyer to help protect their rights.