The statute of limitations for workers’ compensation limits the amount of time in which you can file a claim for an injury or illness brought about by an incident at your workplace. These statutes are designed to control the flow of cases in court, while also providing you with enough time to gather the information you need to establish a comprehensive claim.
Statutes of limitations vary from state to state. If you find yourself injured while on the job, you can work with your employer or with a workers’ compensation lawyer to determine how much time you have to bring a claim together and to fight for coverage based on your losses.
What Workers’ Compensation Is
Should you get hurt while on the job, workers’ compensation exists to help you with unexpected medical expenses and lost income, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). When a company opts to provide you with workers’ compensation, that company also avoids unexpected losses that may be affiliated with your injury, depending on how severe said injury is.
The amount of compensation you should expect will vary based on the severity of your losses and injuries. For example, most workers’ compensation coverage protects you from lost wages and medical expenses, as well as ongoing care costs. If a loved one dies due to a workplace injury, you may also receive coverage for funeral expenses and non-economic damages for wrongful death.
That said, there are expenses that workers’ compensation will not cover. For example, if it can be proven that you or another party caused a machine to falter or otherwise instigated the incident that resulted in your injury, you may not receive workers’ compensation. Similarly, you may not receive non-economic damages if you claim to have suffered from emotional injuries that do not correlate with any physical injuries related to your work.
Types of Workers’ Compensation
Note that there is more than one kind of workers’ compensation. Should you end up injured while at work, you can file a claim for:
- Permanent partial disability – According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), the term “disability” here applies to any difficulties you may have going about your required responsibilities at work. For example, if a doctor informs you that you are not allowed to lift items above a certain weight or remain standing for more than a few hours, you would qualify for permanent partial disability.
- Permanent total disability – Similarly, if a medical professional informs you or a loved one that you may never return to work based on the injuries you suffered, you can fight for compensation.
- Past-due temporary disability – If your claim with an insurance company regarding workplace injury was denied, you can request that your employer provide you with the means to make up for any expenses that you could not afford when that claim failed to go through, per the SSA.
How to Respond to a Workplace Injury
If you get injured while you are on the job, do not try to continue working. Instead, you will want to reach out to your employer and report your injury as soon as possible. The sooner you report your condition, the faster your employer can work to report said condition and get you the workers’ compensation benefits you need to ease your recovery.
How is Workers’ Compensation Different from Third-Party Liability?
Workers’ compensation, as mentioned, protects your employer as much as it protects you. However, there are circumstances where a third-party may be held responsible for your injuries or condition in your workplace.
In these cases, you will need to work with a professional to assess the events that led to your accident. For example, if you were exposed to asbestos because a third-party packaged the products you needed with related substances and you develop lung cancer from that exposure, then you can seek compensation from that third-party instead of from your employer.
Can You Do Anything to Impact Your Workers’ Compensation Payout?
Your workers’ compensation payout will depend on the circumstances that led to your workplace accident. You can work with a workers’ compensation lawyer to determine what avenues of compensation may be available to you based on those circumstances and which make the most sense to fight for.
The Team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC Can Advise You on Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
If you want to establish a workers’ compensation claim or believe that the settlement your employer has offered you does not fit your needs, you can work with a workers’ compensation lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC to better understand your rights. We can help you make sure your claim meets the statute of limitations for workers’ compensation in your state. In addition, our firm works on a contingency fee basis, meaning we only get paid if you receive your compensation. You pay nothing upfront or out of pocket. To speak with a representative, call (800) 603-4224.