In 2017, California workers suffered 466,000 injuries on the job. Some of these injuries result in time off from work.
Workers that find themselves in this situation panic because many are just getting by from one paycheck to the next. Any disturbance in cash flow could be catastrophic in the long term.
Does workers comp cover lost wages? Keep reading to learn more about workers comp and if your wages are covered if you’re hurt on the job.
A Primer on Workers Comp
Workers compensation insurance is a type of insurance that employers get when they hire their first employee. It’s meant to protect both workers and employers.
All but a few states require employers to carry workers compensation. The penalties for not having coverage are severe.
Many states like Pennsylvania consider it to be a criminal offense. Pennsylvania can levy fines for as much as $15,000 and up to 7 years in jail per day that an employee isn’t covered.
There are benefits of having workers compensation insurance, aside from avoiding stiff penalties. Employers are shielded from lawsuits by employees. Employees receive compensation from the insurance company.
Workers compensation does cover things like medical bills and lost wages when you are hurt at work. The incident at work has to directly cause the injury in order to get your claim approved.
Workers compensation only covers part of your lost wages. How much depends on your state and what’s approved by the insurance company.
There are thousands of car accidents each year. Many of these when workers are traveling to and from work. In this instance, workers compensation wouldn’t pay for you for lost wages.
You would be getting paid by the other party’s insurance company. That’s because you weren’t performing official duties. However, if you were delivering an item on the job in your employer’s car, workers comp may pay for lost wages.
Denied Lost Wages Claims
There are cases where workers compensation claims are denied. Some denials are because insurance companies don’t want to pay out claims.
You don’t want to give an insurance company a reason to deny your claim for lost wages. You need to make sure that you report your claim and prove that your injuries are a direct result of your work.
You need to report your injury as soon as it happens. Each state has a statute of limitations laws to report a workplace injury and to file a claim.
Make sure that you document everything related to your case. Take good notes during each conversation with your doctors and employer. You may need to hire an attorney to help you resolve your claim.
Claim Your Lost Wages
Does workers comp cover lost wages? Workers comp insurance should cover your lost wages, but don’t expect to receive the full amount.
You should also expect that it will take a while to resolve your claim with the insurance company. Do your part and report the injury immediately and provide as much documentation as possible.
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