Types of Disabilities Covered by Workers’ Comp | Lebanon Disability Lawyer
Private businesses report approximately 2.8 million nonfatal workplace injuries and nearly 5,400 fatalities each year. Many injuries and illnesses, especially those sustained at a construction site or in a high-risk environment, can lead to long-term and short-term disabilities. When an individual suffers a debilitating workplace injury, workers’ compensation benefits typically cover four types of disabilities.
If you or a loved one were injured in a work accident, our experienced Lebanon disability lawyer would like to help. While you focus on your recovery, our tenacious legal team can take care of filing and representing your case. Moreover, workers’ compensation often covers lost wages and medical bills; thus, if you qualify for benefits, you may not have to worry about coming out-of-pocket for mounting medical bills and other expenses.
At The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, we only charge a fee if we successfully secure compensation or benefits on a client’s behalf. Call our office today to schedule a complimentary consultation.
What is Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
Workers’ compensation insurance is required for most Virginia employers. As a general rule, a company with more than two employees is required by law to carry this type of insurance. Contractors or other businesses that hire subcontractors to assist in completing projects must count independent contractors when calculating the total number of employees. For those employers that are not required to carry coverage, voluntarily insurance benefits may still be provided.
Worker’s compensation serves as a means for providing injured workers specific benefits while protecting employers from exorbitant civil lawsuits. Regardless of the cause of a worksite accident, employees who suffer on-the-job injuries may be eligible for benefits under the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act. However, there are specific requirements that must be fulfilled to qualify. For example, a work-related injury or illness typically must be reported to an employer within thirty days from the date of an accident, and a claim must be filed with the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission no later than two years after the accident. Failure to abide by these deadlines could compromise the ability to secure much-needed compensation.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Lebanon Work Injury Disability Lawyer?
At the Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, we have helped injured workers and victims secure compensation for over three decades. We have recovered millions of dollars in compensation, benefits, and trial awards for our clients.
We understand how financially devastating a debilitating injury can be, which is why we do not collect a fee unless we are successful in securing benefits or compensation on a client’s behalf. This means you will not have to worry about coming out-of-pocket for quality legal representation and disability guidance.
What Types of Benefits May I Be Entitled to Under Workers’ Compensation Disability Insurance?
If a claim is compensable, an employer may be responsible for providing medical treatment through its insurer, which includes (but is not limited to):
- Mileage reimbursement for travel to and from doctor’s visits
- Primary doctor and specialist(s) expenses (when medically necessary)
- Physical Therapy
- Medical Tests
- Prescription Drugs
- Durable medical equipment
Wage loss compensation may also available beginning on the eighth day of disability. Further, if incapacitation continues for more than twenty-one days, the first seven days are also payable.
What Types of Disabilities are Covered By Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
There are generally four types of workplace disabilities that are covered under workers’ compensation, including:
Temporary Partial Disability (“TPD”)
Temporary partial disability is when an employee is unable to work at full capacity, meaning a doctor states he or she can return to work with restrictions. An employee may be eligible to receive Temporary Partial Disability Benefits to supplement any loss of earnings due to restricted work status. After injuries have healed, an employee is also entitled to return to their prior position, meaning a company can only hire a temporary replacement.
Temporary Total Disability (“TTD”)
Temporary total disability means an employee is unable to attend work due to their injury. In this case, an organization cannot ask an individual to work if a doctor has prescribed avoiding work for some time. If a worker qualifies for TTD benefits, they may be entitled to compensation equaling 66 2/3% of their regular wages (calculated upon earnings for the fifty-two weeks before an injury).
Permanent Partial Disability (“PPD”)
Permanent partial disability means an employee can never work at full capacity (i.e., an injury has reached a state of maximum medical improvement, and the condition is not expected to improve significantly). In this case, an organization cannot release a worker from their position. If an injured victim receives a permanent impairment rating greater than 0% to a ratable extremity, PPD compensation may be available.
Permanent Total Disability (“PTD”)
Permanent total disability is the worst-case scenario. A PTD means injuries are so severe that an individual is permanently unable to work. In this situation, a disability lawyer in Lebanon may be able to help secure long-term salary benefits.
Workplace Disability Benefits
Although workers’ compensation provides tremendous benefits for employees disabled during work, it can be challenging to secure and retain benefits. Every claim accompanying a workplace disability is thoroughly scrutinized, and monthly check-ups determine whether a worker is fit for work.
Can I Qualify for Other Disability Benefits Outside of Workers’ Compensation?
Private insurance companies operate short and long-term disability insurance. Workers who are eligible for these benefits have purchased this insurance or have it bought by their employer. In most cases, employers pay for this insurance as a benefit for their employees. These practices are done to retain employees, but sometimes, the organization deducts a portion of an employee’s salary to contribute to the policy.
How Much Does Disability Insurance Typically Pay?
Financial coverage under a short or long-term disability policy depends on state laws and the insurance company. However, in most cases, a policy will pay 60% of an employee’s salary before being disabled.
If you have an active disability insurance policy, you should be aware of the following key features:
- Benefits are free from income tax.
- A doctor will certify the level of impairment and report to the insurance company about progress.
- Benefits are rarely paid for more than two years in case of short-term disability.
Does An Employer Have to Carry Disability Insurance in Virginia?
A few states mandate disability insurance in their laws, but Virginia is not one of them. However, most organizations in hazardous fields (such as construction, waste management, hazardous chemicals, etc.) provide such insurance to retain employees.
If you are facing difficulties getting paid by workers’ compensation, we encourage you to reach out to Lebanon, VA disability lawyer Mark Hurt. He can listen to the facts of your case, help identify all potentially liable parties, and aggressively fight to get you the compensation you rightfully deserve.
Can My Employer Retaliate Against Me For Filing a Disability Claim?
No. If an employee is being mistreated or being subjected to retaliation as a result of filing a workers’ compensation claim, it is recommended that they hire an experienced Lebanon disability lawyer immediately. Under Virginia law, employers may not retaliate if an injured worker files for benefits. The following are a few examples of unfair treatment that may constitute retaliation:
- Terminating an employee due to filing a claim
- Failing to provide the maximum amount of deserved benefits
- Treating an employee hostile after they file a workers’ compensation case
- Failing to timely file a workers’ compensation claim
- Discouraging (or attempting to prevent) a worker from reporting an accident
Mark Hurt is the Experienced Disability Lawyer in Lebanon, VA You Can Trust!
A workers’ compensation claim can be rejected on minor technicalities; thus, it is critical to be aware of all requirements and deadlines. For instance, any claim for workers’ compensation should be reported to a manager within thirty days of an accident. These are loop-holes that insurance companies often exploit to safeguard their finances and reject disability insurance claims.
At The Law Office of Mark T. Hurt, as an experienced disability law firm in Lebanon, VA, we can represent you in all aspects of your disability claim on a contingency fee basis. Working with a disability lawyer can help avoid small mistakes that could compromise a disability claim and can ensure that you receive the full treatment to which you are entitled. If you or a loved one suffered an injury at work, reach out to our compassionate team today to schedule a free case evaluation.