Many people work in industries that create risks for accidents and physical injuries. Even employees who do not work in a high-risk field can still suffer from injuries related to their job, and workers compensation can help them recover. Workers compensation was made specifically to protect the interests of both the employer and the employee in the case of an accident. An employee cannot sue an employer with workers compensation insurance, but they can get compensation to pay for their injuries. Here’s five important things to understand about workers compensation policies.
- Workers Compensation Only Applies to Employees
Volunteers are out of luck when it comes to coverage. A workers compensation claim can only be filed by an actual employee of a company. This excludes independent contractors as well.
- You Can Still File a Claim With a Pre-Existing Condition
An insurance company cannot simply refuse to pay you compensation just because you have a pre-existing condition. They may try to, but this is usually illegal. If a company denies your claim because of a pre-existing condition, contact your state workers compensation board and an attorney to see your options.
- You Can’t File for an Old Injury, but You Can Reopen the Old Case
Old injuries can arise for a number of different work-related reasons. Unfortunately, you normally cannot file a new claim to get coverage for them, even if it was a work-related incident that caused the old injury to reappear. Instead, you have the option to reopen your original claim case. This can be a difficult thing to do, as many insurance companies want their cases to remain closed. Getting in touch with a lawyer can help make this process easier and possible.
- Workers Comp Has Wide Coverage
Workers compensation can cover many expenses that result from an injury, including medical costs, wages that are no longer earned, care costs, disability costs and funeral expenses. However, workers compensation does not apply if the employee started a fight, was neglectful of safety policies, got injured intentionally or was negligent at work.
- Not Every Employer Has It
Not every employer has workers compensation insurance. Some states legally require it, but others do not. Ask your employer about their policy before you begin. That way you know what you’ll be covered for if you get injured at work.
Issues can always arise after a work accident. Consider reaching out to New Jersey work injury attorneys, like from Rispoli & Borneo, P.C., for help if you find the claims process too stressful or overwhelming.