In most, if not all states, if you get hurt on the job, you can apply for workers compensation. It wouldn’t be fair for you to bear the brunt of your injuries if you were hurt while working. At the same time, it doesn’t seem fair for your employer to pay for your medical care out of pocket. That’s why California has a workers compensation program. Our workers compensation lawyers in Los Angeles are well versed in California law. Not only do we know what benefits you’re entitled to, but we also know which employees aren’t eligible for benefits.
Here, we will discuss the details of the workers compensation laws in California. We will also describe the benefits you’ll receive if your claim is approved. Finally, we’ll explain why it’s a good idea to hire a personal injury attorney in Los Angeles, California to handle your claim. If you still have questions or concerns about your own case, give us a call. We can always schedule your free, initial consultation.
Not All Workers in California are Entitled to Benefits
Every state has their own law that dictates which workers can apply for workers compensation benefits. In California, there are certain groups of workers who are not eligible for workers comp. This is the case in most states.
For one thing, only companies that have 3 or more employees has to carry workers compensation insurance. If you work for a company that only has one or two employees, then you won’t be able to file a claim.
Second, there are categories of workers who are excluded from workers compensation in California. These include, but are not limited to the following:
- Sole proprietors and business owners
- Independent contractors
- Seasonal and casual workers
- Domestic servants who work for a relative
- Railroad employees
- Federal employees
- Agricultural workers
As long as you don’t fall into any of these categories, you will likely be eligible for workers compensation. You won’t know if your claim is approved until your employer and their insurance carrier have a chance to review your claim.
Your Workers Compensation Lawyers in Los Angeles Know the Requirements for Workers Comp Benefits
If you expect to receive workers compensation benefits, you must meet certain criteria. Most of these are common sense. However, there are certain strict requirements that, if you don’t meet, will cost you a chance to receive benefits.
The requirements for workers compensation in California include the following:
- Your injury must take place on company property. If you don’t work at a physical location, then you must be acting with the scope of your employment at the time of your accident.
- You cannot be under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of your workplace accident.
- You must be on company time when the accident occurs.
- You must be treated by a state-approved workers comp doctor.
- You must report your injury to your employer within 30 days.
- You must file your actual workers compensation claim within 1 year.
For the most part, workers compensation claims in California are approved. Your employer gains nothing by denying a qualified claim. They’ll have to pay money to defend their position knowing they may still lose. Plus, it doesn’t look good for an employer to deny their employees medical care for work-related injuries.
What Happens if Your Workers Compensation Claim is Denied?
There’s always the chance that your workers compensation claim could be denied. If this happens, your personal injury attorney in Los Angeles, California will fight back. They can file an appeal on your behalf.
Once you file your appeal, your employer will have a certain time to respond. If they still deny your claim, the case will go before the Division of Workers Compensation. They will issue their final order. If your claim is approved, you’ll receive benefits. If not, your workers compensation lawyer in Los Angeles can file suit on your behalf.
Your Personal Injury Attorney in Los Angeles, California Will Make Sure You Get the Benefits You Deserve
Once approved for workers compensation, you’ll start to receive your benefits. In California, injured workers are entitled to three types of workers comp benefits. These include the following:
- Medical coverage for your injuries
- Replacement wages while you are out of work
- Retraining if you can no longer do the same kind of work you did prior to the accident
Even before your claim is approved, your employer will cover up to $10,000 of your initial medical treatment. By the time this money is used up, you should know whether your claim has been approved.
You’ll also receive replacement wages equal to 2/3 of your average weekly wages. In California, the most you can receive per week is $1,356.31. This is a lot higher than it is in some states. For example, in Georgia, the weekly maximum is only $675. However, in California you can only receive benefits for a total of 104 weeks (2 years). Most other states offer benefits for a lot longer than that, including a state like Georgia.
Contact One of Our Seasoned Workers Compensation Lawyers in Los Angeles
If you were hurt at work and aren’t sure what your rights are, you should contact our office directly. When you call, you can schedule your free, initial consultation. This will give you a chance to sit down with an experienced workers compensation lawyer in Los Angeles. They can review your case and let you know how the workers comp process works in California. They can even give you an idea of what kind of benefits you’ll receive.
While there’s no guarantee that your workers compensation claim will be approved, your odds are much better if you have an attorney. The insurance company won’t try to take advantage of you if you’re represented by a seasoned personal injury attorney in Los Angeles, California. They’ll make sure your claim is handled properly. And, if you qualify for benefits, they won’t make you wait any longer than what’s legally allowed.
Call today to set up a date and time that works for you. Since the consultation is free, you don’t have anything to lose. And, since you don’t pay anything until we settle your case, you won’t have to worry about an upfront payment. Your employer will have a team of lawyers working for them and you should too.