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A workplace injury is something that no one expects. But when it happens to you, you need to be prepared for what to do next.
Workplace injuries can be tragic. Not only are you no longer able to work, but you still must support your family and navigate the complex area of workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation is a state-sponsored insurance that is designed to provide you with financial assistance if you become injured and are unable to work because of a work-related injury or illness.
Where Did Workers’ Compensation Come From?
In 1882, Labor Day established the movement in which employees found that they were overworked, underpaid, and often mistreated by their employers. The parade in 1882 was what brought awareness and forced workers to stand up for their rights. Today, workplaces know that they must care for their employees and take care of them when they become injured.
Not only are there federal regulations, but now states require that employers care for their employees in the event they are injured on the job.
Facts to Know about Workers’ Compensation in New Jersey
If you work in New Jersey, and you are injured on the job, you may qualify for workers’ compensation. However, you must know the facts about how this insurance works and the process for receiving payment.
- Eligibility – You are eligible for workers’ compensation when you sustain a work-related injury, disease, or illness. These must arise out of the ordinary course of employment. Even if you are no longer working, if the injury stems back from your employment, you can still collect the benefits, but you must prove that it was work-related to do so. You can also obtain benefits for injuries from work-related accidents, such as lifting, falling, or an automobile accident. Repetitive motion or exposure to toxins also qualifies.
- Lost Wages – You can receive temporary disability benefits from workers’ compensation if you have become disabled due to your work-related injury or illness. However, you must be disabled for seven consecutive days before you can unlock the lost wages benefit. From there, you will only receive 70 percent of your average weekly salary, which is subject to the maximum set by the statute.
- Medical Benefits and Payments – Your employer, via workers’ compensation insurance, provides payment for all necessary and acceptable medical treatments. These treatments must be required for your recovery. Your employer and the insurer do have the right to select the physician that will provide treatment for your injuries.
- Permanent Disability Benefits – You may receive additional payments after you have exhausted the temporary disability benefits and medical treatments only if you have a permanent disability. You do not need a total permanent disability to collect this version of disability benefits, but you could receive lifetime benefits if it is decided that you are permanently unable to work due to the injury or illness.
- Fault Does Not Apply – Unlike regular injury cases, responsibility does not apply in a workers’ compensation case. Therefore, even if the accident was your fault or partially your fault, you can receive workers’ compensation as long as you were not under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or maliciously causing the injury.
Speak with a Workers’ Compensation Attorney for More Information
It is important that you talk to a workers’ compensation attorney in New Jersey to explore your options. Work alongside a workers’ compensation attorney in New Jersey that can help you obtain the compensation you need and one that is familiar with the latest statutes for injured workers.