Did you get injured at work or experience a work-related illness? You may be confused about whether you should use workers’ comp or your own insurance. You might be unfamiliar with the workers’ comp process too. Some employers even influence you not to file a workers’ compensation claim, trying to make you use your own insurance to avoid further stress and complications.
However, if your injury or illness is caused by or linked to work, you should use workman’s comp insurance in Minnesota instead of your personal insurance. Want to learn more about your rights and how you can benefit from workers’ compensation? Check out our article below.
Workers’ Compensation Versus Your Own Insurance
Workers’ compensation or workman’s compensation refers to insurance that gives employees protection when they suffer from injuries or disabilities while performing their job. These could include falls, slips, a back injury caused by repetitive motion, or injury from a car accident while driving for work.
Carpal tunnel syndrome, lung damage because of hazardous substances, and qualifying mental conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder are also included. This coverage is regulated by states. For example, according to the Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Act, businesses are responsible for their employees’ workers’ comp.
Meanwhile, if you experience non-work-related illnesses or injuries, you can use your own insurance. In several companies, health insurance is included in the benefits they provide to their employees, but you can also have private health insurance.
However, given the implementation of workman’s compensation, private health insurance providers do not have the responsibility to cover the expenses of the insured if they’re caused by injury or illness at work.
In cases where they pay for work-related injuries or conditions, private health insurance companies would resort to subrogation. This means that they will demand reimbursement from the party that’s responsible for the coverage.
Why You Should Use Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ compensation may not be favorable to employers as it will cost them a huge amount of money. Their premiums will be affected, and these also depend on the extent of the workers’ compensation claims. As a result, they may try to convince you not to use the workers’ comp and use your health insurance instead to cover the expenses.
If you give in to the pressure, this also means lying to the doctor and staying firm that you didn’t get the injury because of work. It can only lead to more complications when you try to file for injury claims from your insurance provider.
That is why it’s best to seek help from workers’ compensation lawyers in Minnesota, so you can fight for your right, get proper guidance, and experience several benefits you’re entitled to. For instance, medical expenses will be covered. These include medications, surgery, and hospital visits. If you didn’t suffer from permanent disability, you could recover more quickly without having to worry about medical bills.
However, recovery time means that you won’t be able to work for the time being. Meaning no income. With workers’ compensation, lost wages will be partially covered. It also covers physical therapy and other costs necessary for continuous care.
If the injury leads you to have a partial or permanent disability, you can also take advantage of the disability benefits under the workman’s comp insurance in Minnesota. If the employee died because of an illness or injury from work, death benefits are also provided. These include funeral costs and benefits for the family of the employee.
Disability Insurance Versus Workers’ Comp
Similar to workers’ compensation, disability insurance allows you to get partial coverage for lost income while your illness or injury stops you from going to work. However, unlike workers’ comp that is exclusive for work-related illnesses and injuries, disability insurance covers injuries encountered inside or outside the job, like the ones caused by a car accident.
Workers’ comp is also regulated by the government, while disability insurance is voluntary. Thus, unlike workmans’ compensation, disability insurance requires employers to pay a premium, which may be included in the benefit plan provided by employers.
With disability insurance, coverage for rent, groceries, and other living expenses is provided while you still can’t go back to work. There are also short-term and long-term disabilities. Coverage for a short-term disability includes maternity leave, rehab, broken bones, and recovery after surgery. Meanwhile, the coverage of long-term disability insurance includes pneumonia, complications caused by pregnancy, heart attack, and stroke.
Filing a Claim for Workers’ Comp
If you incurred an injury or illness from fulfilling work responsibilities, you should file a claim for workmans’ comp insurance in Minnesota. First, you have to notify your employer about the injury within a specific deadline. If you fail to report within that time frame, you may lose your right to financial help under the workers’ comp.
Then, your employer should fill out the First Report of Injury, if you got injured while doing your work. You should give complete and accurate details regarding the injury, including how you got hurt and its severity.
As workers’ comp works as a no-fault system, you don’t have to prove the employer’s negligence to show liability. At the same time, the employer cannot point negligence as a form of defense to a workers’ comp claim.
However, some companies will discourage you from filing the claim. Consulting trusted workers’ compensation lawyers in Minnesota like Osterbauer Minnesota Injury Law Firm will help ensure that you get the right compensation.
Also, if employers do not comply with the requirements for workers’ comp, they may have to pay a maximum of $1,000 fine weekly for each employee. Then, they will not be allowed to hire new employees; they have to get insurance first. Thus, instead of trying to save money, businesses will have to spend more if they fail to follow the workman’s comp insurance.
Acquiring an injury or illness while at work is sometimes unavoidable. However, instead of using your own insurance, you should know your rights and options like workmans’ comp insurance in Minnesota. You will have coverage not only for medical bills but also for lost income, rehabilitation, and other benefits.
If you find the process confusing and overwhelming, our seasoned workers’ compensation lawyers in Minnesota are here to accommodate your needs and ensure you’ll be compensated fairly. Contact us today for prompt legal advice.