Answers to the Eight Most Common Work Comp Injury Questions!
Are you confused with and have some questions about California’s workers’ compensation laws?
It’s not surprising because the laws are complex and constantly evolving. However, you should be well aware of the laws and your rights, especially if you are an employee.
Here are some answers to the most commonly asked questions about workers’ compensation injuries.
What Injuries Qualify for Worker’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation covers most injuries that may occur to employees while completing authorized work tasks. It, however, doesn’t cover injuries that occur while doing something outside your scope of employment, like driving home for lunch.
What Are the Basic Types of Injuries Covered?
There are two types of primary injuries eligible for workers’ compensation.
Injuries arising from repeated work exposure
Some injuries result from not a single injury but repeated exposure or movements. Examples are chronic backache from lifting boxes every day and respiratory problems due to constant exposure to chemicals.
Traumatic injury at work
These are injuries resulting from a single event. Examples are roofers falling from the roof or employees slipping on wet or slippery floors.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Filing Workers’ Compensation Claims in California?
It is one year from the date of the work-related injury.
There are other deadlines you also have to meet in California to avoid denying your workers’ compensation claim. For example, you have 30 days from the injury date to report your work-related injury to someone authoritative.
What Are My Eligible Benefits?
You can claim the following benefits if you get injured at work in California:
- Medical costs including doctor visits, medicine, tests, and physical rehabilitation
- Financial compensation if the injury prevents you from pursuing your usual job after recovery
- Financial compensation for not recovering entirely and not being able to return to work despite various treatments
- Vouchers as supplemental job displacement benefits. It pays for any retraining or learning new skills because you don’t recover entirely or need a new job.
- Death benefits to dependents of employees who die as a result of a work-related injury. The benefits include weekly financial compensation and funereal expenses.
Can I Consult My Doctor?
You can if you predesignate your physician before you get injured at work. You can predesignate your physician by sending a written statement to inform your employer before the injury.
Your employer chooses your doctor if you do not predesignate any physician.
Can I Claim Compensation If My Employer Wasn’t Responsible for the Injury?
Yes, you can because workers’ compensation in California follows a no-fault insurance system. There is an exception to the rule where you can’t recover workers’ comp if you had intentionally caused the injury.
What Do I Do If My Claim Gets Denied or If I’m Not Happy with My Benefits?
You can file a notice of appeal if you aren’t happy with the workers’ compensation benefits you receive. However, you must file the notice within 20 days of the date of receiving your benefits.
Can My Employer Fire Me If I File a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
No, they can’t. It’s, in fact, illegal for employers to fire or even punish employees for filing a claim. It’s even illegal for them to fire or punish any co-workers who testify on your behalf.
Now that you have your doubts cleared about workers’ compensation claims, you may consider filing your case. You can always make your claim on your own.
However, hiring a Glendale workers’ compensation attorney may be the difference between winning and losing your claim. They are well versed with California’s workers’ compensation law and will strive to maximize your compensation.