Worker’s Compensation Laws were introduced for the first time in United States in the early 1900‘s and they were modeled after 19th century European laws. By 1920, most states had adopted similar laws and in 1948 Mississippi became the last state to adopt such laws.
Worker’s Compensation Laws eliminated lengthy and expensive trials were the burden of proof was on the employee and removed a source of financial uncertainty for the employer. Each states has its own requirements concerning the coverage factors such as:
- minimum number of employees
- length of employment
- familial relationship
- self-employed workers and others.
In the cases of personal injury at workplace, worker’s compensation should cover employee’s medical treatment. This means that insurance provider is responsible for all medical expenses without co-payment by claimant and the cover costs include initial treatment and follow up treatment. Another covered issue is loss of wages, most states have a waiting period of between 3 and 7 days to qualify for indemnity payments. Disability payments are awarded if the worker may no longer return to work with sufficient capacity to perform their prior duties. In this cases is used the term Maximal Medical Improvement (MMI) that points the condition at which the person has been stabilized and no further improvement is expected.
In the case of death the benefits are paid to the survivors of the worker who was killed on the job and the level of the benefits vary with the number of dependents. Benefits are generally based on average weekly wage amount and last for the lifetime of the surviving spouse or until dependent children reach 18 years of age.
Lump Sum Settlements can be reached between the disabled employee, the employer and the insurance provider. They are also known as Negotiated Settlements or Compromise and Release Agreements. There are states where the settlement may only cover indemnity portions of the claim but in most of the cases the settlement must be approved by the state worker’s compensation authority. If you need further legal help and assistance, don’t hesitate to come to Legal Bistro and choose the right personal injury lawyer to handle your case.