Workers who have sustained injuries on the job or developed a harmful condition
or illness as a result of their work environment or duties are eligible for
workers’ compensation benefits, but how well do you truly understand your rights to them?
Below is some information you should know regarding your workers’
What is it? Worker’s compensation is a state-mandated program that consists
of payments that are required by law to be made to employees who have
either been injured or developed a disability that is work-related. It
is also a no-fault based system, which means workers are generally eligible
for these vital benefits no matter who was at fault for the injury. However,
this also means that employees are typically precluded from suing n employer
for their injuries, with a few rare exceptions.
What incidents are and are not covered by workers’ compensation? The benefits you receive from workers’ compensation are intended
to cover any injuries or occupational illnesses that result from either
your employer’s careless or your own. That said, if you are tested
for drugs or alcohol and it is shown that you were under the influence
when you sustained your injury, your benefits can be denied. If your injuries
were self-inflicted, you would also be denied worker’s compensation benefits.
What kind of expenses are covered by workers’ compensation? Workers’ compensation payments are generally modest, though the actual
benefits cover quite a bit, including medical care for your injury or
illness, costs for retraining, compensation for permanent injuries, replacement
income, and benefits to survivors of workers who are killed while on the
job. Unlike a personal injury claim, workers’ compensation benefits
do not cover pain and suffering.
Does workers’ compensation insurance cover long-term or permanent
injuries? Workers’ compensation does not solely cover accidents. Many workers
develop problems or debilitating illnesses as a result of their job, whether
it be from repetitious movements or exposure to a harmful substance. Whether
you were hurt in an accident or developed an injury or illness over time,
it would be covered by workers’ compensation insurance.
Are all employees covered by workers’ compensation insurance? Most employees are covered, but not all. Some employees that are generally
excluded from this coverage include independent contractors, business
owners, volunteers, employees of private homes, farmers and farmhands,
and casual workers. Additionally, employees of the federal government
have their own federal workers’ compensation insurance program and,
as such, are not covered by state workers’ compensation.
Can I sue my employer for my injury? If you sustained an injury as a result of an intentionally harmful act
from your employer, you can sue your employer, but you will have to waive
your right to workers’ compensation insurance. If successful, you
could be compensated for things that are not covered under workers’
compensation, including pain and suffering and mental anguish.
Can I get fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim? Employers are prohibited, by law, from taking action against an employee
for filing a workers’ compensation claim. If your employer retaliated
against you for this reason, it should be reported immediately to your
local workers’ compensation office.
Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Montana
If you sustained a job-related injury or illness, you have a right to file
for workers’ compensation benefits. At Odegaard Braukmann Law, PLLC,
our workers’ compensation attorneys in Montana will provide the
counsel you need and help you navigate what is oftentimes a complex process.
Backed by over 75 years of experience, you can trust in our ability to
effectively assist you.
Get started today and call our office at
(406) 640-4441 to schedule your free case evaluation!