Benefits Available in a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Posted on behalf of Lynch Law Firm on Nov 07, 2018 in Workers' Compensation News
New Jersey employees who are injured in a work-related accident may be entitled to benefits through a workers’ compensation claim. However, the types of benefits available to each worker depend on factors related to his or her injuries.
To find out the types of benefits you may be entitled to receive after suffering a work-related injury, contact Lynch Law Firm’s New Jersey workers’ compensation lawyers. We will provide you a free and confidential consultation to discuss your workplace accident and help you file a claim to receive the benefits you deserve.
Below, we have provided several types of benefits employees may receive through a workers’ compensation claim.
What Are Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
Workers’ compensation is a no-fault insurance system that provides financial benefits for employees who are injured in a work-related accident or suffer an occupational illness.
Because workers’ compensation is no-fault, you do not have to prove your employer was responsible for causing your injuries. You may receive benefits for your medical treatment, lost wages and disability for any work-related injury or illness.
Your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance should provide you benefits for the entirety of your medical care needed to treat your work-related injury. In New Jersey, workers’ compensation should pay for the following types of medical services:
- Past and future medical treatment
- Medical assistive equipment
- Prescription medication
- Cost of travel to and from doctors’ appointments
- Hospital stays
- Emergency room treatment
- Medical transportation to the hospital
Temporary Disability Benefits
Employees may be entitled to temporary disability benefits if their treating physician determines that they are unable to work or perform their job’s regular duties while recovering from an injury. In this situation, workers may be entitled to receive temporary disability benefits to partially replace their lost income.
In New Jersey, temporary disability benefits typically amount to 70 percent of the average weekly wages you earned at the time of your injury. However, workers may receive a maximum of 75 percent, and a minimum of 20 percent of their weekly wages.
You may receive temporary disability benefits after the seventh consecutive day you have missed work due to your injury. However, you may only receive temporary disability benefits for the first 26 weeks of your disability, or until your physician has determined you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI), whichever happens first.
Permanent Partial Benefits
If your physician has determined that you have reached MMI and your condition will not improve with medical treatment, you may be entitled to receive permanent partial disability benefits. When this happens, your treating physician will assign you a disability rating based on a percentage of “scheduled” or “non-scheduled” losses.
A scheduled loss involves an injury to an area of your body essential for performing your job’s required duties. This may include an injury to your:
Likewise, nonscheduled losses involve areas of the body that are not specifically named in scheduled losses, including your back, lungs and heart.
Permanent disability benefits are paid weekly and begin after the date your temporary disability benefits end. Starting in 2019, the rates for permanent disability are:
- Maximum: $921
- Minimum: $246
Permanent Total Benefits
If a work-related injury or illness prevents you from returning to any type of employment, you may be entitled to receive permanent total disability. Permanent total benefits are provided for 450 weeks to start, and can extend longer if you prove you are still unable to work and earn an income.
After the 450-week period, payments are made proportionate to your income at the time you were injured. Benefits are based off 70 percent of your average weekly salary, not going over 75 percent of the statewide average weekly wage while not falling below 20 percent.
Your permanent disability benefits may also continue if you have lost two major body parts, or a combination of body parts, including your eyes, arms, hands, legs or feet. Additionally, you may also receive permanent total disability benefits if you suffer a combination of injuries that leave you unable to find employment.
If an employee dies as a result of a work-related injury or illness, his or her surviving dependents may be entitled to death benefits. Typically, death benefits amount to 70 percent of your average weekly wages.
The benefits are divided by amounts determined by a judge during a hearing. Typically, surviving dependents are considered to be the decedent’s spouse and children. A surviving dependent who is not directly related to the decedent must prove his or her dependency.
The decedent’s surviving children may receive death benefits until they reach the age of 18. However, if the child is a full-time student, he or she may receive death benefits until the age of 23.
Legal Help for Injured Workers in New Jersey
If you were injured at work or have been diagnosed with an occupational illness, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical care and loss of income. Lynch Law Firm’s New Jersey workers’ compensation attorneys will review you claim to help you understand which benefits you may be entitled to receive.
Contact us to schedule a free, no obligation consultation today. We charge no upfront fees and payment is only owed if we recover compensation for you.
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