Consider this scenario. An injury has left you unable to work. It happened at the end of your shift, and, although in pain, you completed the remainder of your tasks. After you returned home, the pain grew worse, and by that night, your spouse drove you to the local hospital’s emergency care facility.
Naturally, you worry. You understand that you cannot work until your injury heals. But you wonder about your job and what you should do. Filing for workers’ compensation benefits is now a necessity. However, you have questions and concerns related to pursuing this option. Will your employer punish you? Will your employer believe you? Rumors from co-workers whiz through your head. And you wonder what to believe. But understand that employers cannot fire you if you pursue these benefits.
Benefits cover more than medical expenses
Do not hesitate to seek workers’ compensation benefits. If injured, you likely will qualify for these needed benefits provided by your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. But, also, understand that certain misconceptions about workers’ compensation should not derail your attempts to seek these crucial benefits.
Here are four of those misconceptions:
- Workers’ compensation only covers medical expenses. This is untrue. The benefits you receive also will help pay for your lost wages, continuing costs related to care as well as funeral expenses.
- The injury had to take place at your worksite. Another inaccurate statement. If you are serving in a working capacity and get injured off-site, you may qualify for workers’ compensation. This may include participating in a work-related retreat, meeting with clients at off-site locations and during business trips. Truck drivers, pizza delivery and package delivery drivers also may qualify after a motor vehicle accident or even a dog bite.
- The injury must have occurred while you performed your job. Not true. A slip-and-fall incident at your work facility may qualify you.
- An employer can fire you for seeking benefits. Such an action is a blatant disregard for your rights and is against the law. This would represent retaliation for seeking the benefits you deserve.
Hearsay and uncertainty can create obstacles when attempting to secure workers’ compensation benefits. Do not let them get in your way. Understand your rights.