Vermont workers' compensation

How to Apply for Vermont Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Important: We updated this article in November 2022 in order to ensure all information below is current and accurate. Vermont workers’ compensation claims are handled at the state level unless you’re a federal employee. Vermonters who get hurt or sick on the job can follow these steps to file a claim. Here’s the information you need to get the benefits you’re entitled to.



Am I Eligible for Vermont Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

All Green Mountain State employers must carry Vermont workers’ compensation insurance. It must cover all full- and part-time employees, as well as independent contractors and subcontractors.

How Do I File a Claim?

Seek treatment immediately if your workplace injury or illness requires emergency or urgent care.

Pro Tip: Tell the doctor it’s work-related. If you can’t return to work, get a written note to give to your employer.

Then confirm your employer provides Vermont workers’ compensation insurance coverage. If they don’t, consider filing a personal injury lawsuit for medical bills and lost wages. Pro Tip: If suing is your only option, get a free personal injury claim evaluation online first.

If your employer has workers’ compensation insurance, then the process usually works like this:

  1. You notify your employer immediately. Pro Tip: Don’t wait to report your injury or illness. Why? Because delaying could make you ineligible for workers’ comp benefits.
  2. Your employer must notify the Vermont Department of Labor within 72 hours. They also must complete Form 5 – Employee’s Notice of Injury and Claim for Compensation for their insurer. Pro Tip: Request a copy of this report for your records.
  3. The insurance company has 21 days to investigate your claim. A claims adjuster will contact you for details about your injury or illness. You’ll also sign a Form 7 Medical Authorization to give the insurer access to your medical records. Pro Tip: Be sure to fill this form out completely and then return it promptly to make the investigation fast and smooth!
  4. You may request an appeals hearing if your claim’s denied. Complete Form 6, Notice and Application for Hearing, and mail it to the Vermont Department of Labor. Keep in mind that workers with preexisting conditions are most likely to be denied. Pro Tip: The dispute resolution process isn’t clear. And the burden of proof is on you! It’s smart to consult a lawyer before requesting a hearing.

Learn more from the Vermont Labor Commission’s Employee’s Guide to Workers’ Compensation here.

What Are Vermont Workers’ Comp Benefits?

Approved claims cover necessary medical treatments as well as associated costs. This includes doctor bills, prescriptions, and other medical expenses. You also get reimbursement for travel, meals, and lodging required to receive treatment.

Your benefits depend on the extent and length of your disability:

  • Temporary Partial Disability pays a weekly benefit when your illness or injury limits you to part-time work.
  • Temporary Total Disability pays between $514 and $1,542 a week if you can return to work.
  • Permanent Partial Disability pays a set amount. It’s based on your injury or impairment as well as information from your healthcare provider.
  • Permanent Total Disability pays weekly benefits for life if you’re unable to work.

Get more details on what workers’ compensation benefits cover.

What Else Should I Know About Vermont Workers’ Compensation?

Every year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics analyzes workers’ comp data on most U.S. states and territories. Here’s how the Green Mountain State’s claims activity changed between 2016 and 2020.

 

All categories began to decline in 2018. Recordable cases dropped dramatically between 2018 and 2020. The volume of claims within the service sector was also down significantly. However, of this is from COVID-19 restrictions. Fewer employees missed work, transferred, or received restrictions.

Related: How to Apply for Virginia Workers’ Compensation Benefits

The Vermont workers’ compensation system can make the pain of a workplace illness or injury even worse. You may want to hire an experienced attorney to help you get maximum benefits faster. Your lawyer can negotiate with insurers, gather medical evidence to support your claim, and represent you at hearings.

Pro Tip: Workers’ comp attorneys don’t get paid unless you win benefits. You pay a reasonable, one-time fee only if your case is successful.

Ready to see if you may qualify? Then click the button below to start your free benefits evaluation now.

Get Your Free Benefits Evaluation

Margot Lester

Margot Lester is the CEO of The Word Factory, a B2B & B2C content marketing agency that provides services for Fortune 100 brands, healthtech companies and SaaS developers. An award-winning business and brand journalist, she writes for daily and weekly newspapers and business journals, national magazines, in-flight publications and leading websites. Margot is also an in-demand writing coach and organizational communications trainer, helping individuals and teams write more effectively. Twitter: @word_factory LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/margotlester.