Workers’ Compensation is a form of liability insurance that is required under state laws. It can be complicated to navigate, and the process can be confusing. If you find yourself going through the workers’ compensation process, understanding state-specific guidelines and regulations may require a professional who has experience with workers’ compensation.
What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation was designed to protect employers and their employees in the event an employee became injured or ill while at work. Workers’ compensation provides employees with medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs to help offset the loss of income due to the injury or illness.
Who Carries Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
Workers’ compensation insurance is required for any business that has employees who are not owners. Each state mandates its coverage and has different requirements and guidelines for workers’ compensation claims. The coverage of the insurance policy can vary based on the package purchased by the employer but must meet a minimum threshold established by each state, respectively. The methodology for calculating lost time, the extent of benefits, and treatment instructions can vary drastically by state.
My Employee is Injured at Work, Now What?
Evaluate the incident and decide if emergency medical or non-medical assistance is needed. For emergencies, contact 911, and for non-emergency medical assistance coordinate with the medical facilities that are established through the workers’ compensation insurance carrier.
Gather evidence about the incident. The details will need to be communicated to the claims management professional. The more information gathered, the quicker the claim can be resolved. Make sure to document the following:
Who was injured
What happened and where the incident took place
Medical treatment that was administered
Promptly report the incident to the workers' compensation provider.
Some of the Challenges with Workers’ Compensation
Once the employee has been seen by a medical doctor and treatment has begun, the focus shifts to helping the employee return to work. This can be an arduous process involving follow-up appointments, work restrictions, and various regulations that will need to be adhered to. The employer will need to provide an environment that allows for the restrictions in the workplace, often requiring the employer to be flexible with the employee in order to navigate the return-to-work process.
There may come a time when the employee is not interested in returning to work and the doctor may accommodate that request. At this point, the adjuster, who is the liaison for the employer, employee, and doctor will need to intervene and find out why the doctor has not released the employee to return to work. Allowing the employee to return to work, even in a restricted sense, may help them heal faster, both physically and mentally.
Navigating workers’ compensation laws can be confusing and frustrating. Veritas Administrators has a dedicated and experienced team of workers’ compensation experts ready to assist. To learn more about our ability to partner with you on your workers’ compensation claims, see our "Learn More" button, or feel free to request a phone call.