When you’re injured or contract an illness on the job, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation. Injuries and illnesses in the course and scope of your employment are covered under the state’s workers’ compensation program, whether you sprained your ankle or sustained a spinal injury.
Most people know that their workers’ compensation payments should cover medical costs. If you’re not fully familiar with all the benefits offered, how you can use them and how to get them, it’s worth talking to an attorney.
Why Workers’ Compensation Is Important
The state of Ohio sponsors the workers’ compensation program. It’s designed to support employees who have been injured or suffered illness on the job, so they can recover and return to work whenever possible.
Employers pay for workers’ compensation insurance, which covers the cost of injuries or illnesses. If they don’t pay their premiums on time, however, their coverage will lapse. At that point, they’re solely responsible for covering the cost of employee injuries “for the life of the claim, any unpaid premiums and possible penalties from BWC.” In short, you’ll still be eligible for compensation—but your employer will have to cover that full amount.
If your employer is resistant to the idea of you collecting workers’ compensation payments, contact an attorney right away.
What Workers’ Compensation Payments Can Be Used For
Once your claim has been filed, the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) will classify your claim into one of two categories: medical-only or lost time. Medical-only claims are those in which you’ve been injured, but missed less than seven days of work. Lost time claims cover injuries and illness where you’ve missed eight or more days of work.
If you were unable to return to work promptly, you will likely be eligible for compensation for medical costs as well as lost wages during recovery. There are also a number of benefits that you may continue to collect, based on whether you have a permanent disability or other applicable situation.
Naturally, your first priority should be medical reimbursement. If you’re eligible for other types of benefits, such as lost wages, you can use them to help make up for your lack of regular income. Use them to pay for rent, your mortgage, food, childcare and other necessities—what you would normally use your paycheck to pay for.
If you have questions about what kind of workers’ compensation benefits you are eligible to receive, or how you can spend them, call Nager, Romaine, & Schneiberg Co. L.P.A. today.