What is Workmans’ Compensation?
Workman’s compensation is insurance that provides care/benefits to workers who may have been injured or have become incapacitated as a direct result of work. Since the injury or illness occurred at work or on the job, employers pay for the insurance; the employee is not required to fore-front any of the costs. The insurance also distributes weekly cash benefits to the employee that has been ill or injured. Weekly cash benefits are funded by the employer’s insurance and the Workers’ Compensation board. Typically, in workers’ compensation cases, no single party is at fault. When a claim is made, the amount that the injured employee receives is not decreased by the carelessness of the employee but is also not increased by the employer’s fault in the matter. A Workers’ Compensation claim is paid when both the employer and insurance carrier agree that the injury or illness that the employee endured was work-related. If either disputes the claim, all compensation is withheld until a judge decides who is right.
How to know if you are eligible for workmans’ compensation?
Firstly, if you have lost money from a job for 7 days or more due to a work-related injury, then you may qualify for workers’ compensation. The injury or illness must have occurred at work and as a direct result of the environment at work. On top of this, there must be a workers’ compensation policy in place at your workplace to claim. Examples of things that would qualify you for workers’ compensation would be (Reminder, they must be work-related) :
- Hurting your back in a fall
- Strains and sprains as a result of work (Most common case)
- Chemical Burns
- Getting in a car accident delivering something
What are the rules for workmans’ compensation in Texas?
However, there are some limitations to workers’ compensation. In Texas, you will only receive a portion of your lost wages. But, workers’ compensation benefits are tax-free. But, another downside may be that you cannot receive funds for the pain and suffering of a work-related injury. In addition, not all employers provide workers’ compensation insurance; in Texas, private employers are not required to provide workers’ compensation insurance. If you are receiving workers’ compensation, you cannot sue your employer for a work-related illness or injury since you are already being compensated for it.
Steps into filing a workers’ compensation claim
1.) First, you need to report the injury that occurred in the workplace or that was work-related. According to law, you may not be able to receive compensation if you do not report the injury or illness within 30 days.
2.) Second, you need to see if your employer provides workers’ compensation insurance. Employers are required by law to provide this information to their employees regardless of their status on the insurance. If you are unable to find any documentation regarding workers’ compensation information, you can also research through the state’s online database.
3.) Lastly, file the actual workers’ compensation claim. You need to file the DWC Form-041 with the DWC, you can file this in person, by mail, and also by using the DWC’s online database and filing system.
Accidents and injuries happen all the time, but it is best that we become prepared for them before they happen. Start today by checking your employer’s workers’ compensation policy to see if you are covered. If you are in need of legal assistance, contact an Arlington, TX accident lawyer with Brandy Austin Law Firm to get started on your case.