If your employer told you that you can’t get workers’ compensation benefits, you are probably wondering if it is true. When employers tell workers with no explanation that they will have to pay for everything if they get hurt on the job, this can lead to confusion, anxiety, and stress. As a Minnesota worker, learn about your rights so that if you get hurt (or if you just got hurt), you know what to do.
Minnesota law places some limits on which workers can receive workers’ compensation benefits if they get injured on the job. For example, independent contractors are not entitled to benefits. However, many employers misclassify their workers as contractors when they are employees under the law. Your employer may not know the law and truly believe that you are a contractor. Or your employer may be purposefully misclassifying you to save on taxes and workers’ compensation insurance. If you have been injured at work and believe you have been misclassified, you need to speak to a lawyer right away.
Other types of workers, such as volunteers, cannot receive workers’ compensation benefits. There are a number of exceptions to the volunteer rule and to other laws restricting receipt of benefits. Often determining whether you can get benefits is a very fact-specific question best handled by a lawyer.
If you have already been injured, your employer may have told you that you cannot get benefits because it believes the injury does not qualify as work-related. Fortunately for you, many different injuries may arise out of the course and scope of employment even if it is not obvious. Employees can receive benefits for PTSD due to their work, benefits for an injury that happened on a work trip, and benefits even if they were at fault for the accident.
Again, sometimes employers genuinely believe injured employees do not have a case for benefits, but sometimes they are lying to save money or hassle. When injured employees report their injuries and start getting benefits, it costs employers money. They have to pay premiums to maintain their workers’ compensation insurance coverage, and the premiums may go up if many employees get injured. Some employers opt not to purchase insurance coverage, which in most cases is illegal.
If your employer is telling you that you can’t get benefits, but you believe that you qualify, seek out legal help. A workers’ compensation lawyer can review the facts of your employment and decide if the law is on your side. Then when the insurance company denies your initial request for benefits, the lawyer will handle your case so that you can get the benefits you deserve.
Need help getting workers’ compensation for your injury? Joe Osterbauer, Esq. and the Osterbauer Law Firm stand up for injured Minnesota workers’ rights. Joe’s 27 years of workers’ compensation experience and his team’s speedy service combine to get clients the results they need. To schedule a free consultation, visit Osterbauer Law Firm online or call Joe’s office at (612) 334-3434.