Employers’ Insurance Is the Law
Employers’ insurance for workers’ compensation is mandatory in most states. If your employer does not have insurance, notify your state workers’ compensation review board immediately. If you make an agreement with your employer to pay workers’ compensation benefits to you directly, be sure to get this agreement in writing. However, if your employer refuses to pay you a workers’ compensation benefit or medical expenses and is uninsured, file a workers’ compensation claim against your employer through your state’s workers’ compensation review board.
Depending on your state’s specific laws regarding uninsured employers, you may have more than one option. In some situations, an injured worker will have grounds for filing a lawsuit. In others, the state provides a guaranty fund that pays benefits to injured workers for companies without employers’ insurance for workers’ comp. The state then seeks to secure compensation for this payment from the uninsured employer.
What if My Employer Tells Me Not to File a Claim?
Your employer cannot legally retaliate against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim. It is illegal for your employer to advise you against filing a claim. This is because an employee can construe such advice as a threat.
Your employer is NOT a professional workers’ comp lawyer. Therefore, it is unethical for them to advise you as to the validity of your workers’ compensation claim. If you have sustained an injury in the workplace and have received a medical examination and report supporting your workers’ compensation claim, you have a legitimate case.
If you believe you have a legitimate workers’ compensation claim and that your employer is trying to stop you from filing it, you should immediately contact your state’s workers’ compensation review board.
Can I Sue My Employer in Court? What if They Don’t Have Employers’ Insurance for Workers’ Comp?
Employers’ insurance for workers’ compensation exists as a “no-fault” shield for companies that hire U.S. workers. It is designed to provide a modest benefit to the injured worker while protecting the employer from being sued. However, there are some circumstances in which an injured worker can file suit.
The most common cases of lawsuit with regard to workplace injuries are those in which a third party is culpable. This is called a “third-party claim” and can be filed when the person responsible for your injury was not yourself, your employer, or a coworker.
Here are some circumstances under which you might file a third-party claim:
- Car accidents caused by another person unaffiliated with your company while you are driving for your job.
- Industrial accidents caused by someone other than your employer, such as faulty equipment.
- Injuries caused by unsafe premises that are not owned by your employer.
- A wrongful death claim filed by the family of a worker.
What if My Employer Asks about My Condition?
A problem can arise when an employer contacts an employee to question the severity of their injury or ask them to return to work. If you are experiencing difficulty with an employer or your employers’ insurance company, you should seek legal counsel right away so that you do not put your workers’ compensation claim at risk. We can match you with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney near you for a free consultation by phone today.
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