Workers Compensation in Burlington, VT
You aren’t alone if you ask “How does workers comp work?” Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that provides wage and medical benefits to people who have become ill or injured while at work. The extent of workers’ comp coverage an employer is required to carry is governed by Vermont state law. Thus, in trying to figure out how workers comp works, it helps to understand the laws on the books in the state where the business operates. If the injury or illness a worker sustains is eligible for compensation, the insurance carrier should help ease the financial burden the illness or injury created on the worker. Learn some of the basic principles of Burlington, VT workers’ compensation insurance and how the process works.
Workers Compensation Statistics in Burlington, Vermont?
Workers’ compensation is an unfortunate necessity for a significant number of workers in Chittenden County. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that over 12,300 people in Burlington, VT work in manufacturing as of November 2020. Unfortunately, recent data from the Department of Labor shows they suffer the highest rates of work-related illnesses or injuries. Government employees tend to experience a higher rate of incidents across the country, and Burlington is no exception. Over 23,000 individuals work in government positions in the city and 5.7 out of every 100 workers became injured or fell ill in 2019.
How Does Workers Comp Work in Burlington, Vermont?
Unfortunately, going through the process of applying for workers’ compensation begins with getting sick or injured on the job. The circumstances surrounding the incident that led to your problems are especially crucial. For example, the injury had to occur during your regular work duties. While an event that happens during your lunch break wouldn’t apply, getting into a car accident while running an errand for your boss would qualify for a claim.
Fortunately for residents of Burlington, Vermont’s workers’ compensation laws are among the strictest in the country. Every employer must have workers’ compensation insurance. Including subcontractors or independent contractors. Only employees with approval can choose to buy a policy. After a claim’s approval, beneficiaries receive 66% of their average salary for the last year as a weekly reimbursement for lost wages. You should also know that your attorney fees, medical costs, and death benefits could be covered as well.
For example, say your supervisor asked you to drop something off on your lunch break. While running this errand you then get in a car accident on your way to the destination. Any resulting injury is eligible for workers’ compensation. However, if you are on your lunch break, performing no such task when you get in an accident, it does not qualify for a claim.
The steps you take immediately following a workplace incident in Burlington, VT are critical for purposes of filing a claim for compensation. Follow the following steps to preserve your rights and learn how workers comp works.
Get Medical Attention
After you get injured or feel ill, the first step is to see a doctor. Don’t delay seeking help from a Burlington, VT healthcare professional. This could not only jeopardize your health, but you run the risk of missing time-sensitive deadlines in the workers’ compensation process. Having a proper medical report detailing the extent of the damage and how it occured is the first step in the process. Your employer cannot file a claim with their insurance carrier without this information.
When dealing with a job-related illness, the symptoms and diagnosis may not happen right away. You may find yourself attending regular checkups and testing for weeks or months before a doctor finally associates your illness with your job. Your doctor may make the determination that the illness is either the result of your work conditions or aggravated by them. Once they do, see your human resources representative to file a workers’ compensation claim.
File a First Report of Injury
The first report of an on the job injury or illness will provide the workers’ compensation insurance carrier with the details of the events leading up to the injury. In this report, you will provide your physical injuries, the medical treatment you received and the facilities that provided it. It’s always a good idea to bring a copy of the doctor’s report to submit with the report of injury.
If you are injured or contract an illness while working in Burlington, VT, you have six years from the injury to file a claim. While that may sound like plenty of time, injuries related to a job can become symptomatic later in life. Find medical attention immediately and complete an Employee’s Notice of Injury and Claim for Compensation form. Your supervisor has to submit his or her report to the state online within 72 hours of notification. After approval, you could receive no less than $427 but no more than $1,281 for up to 104 weeks. Medical coverage for your injury or illness, vocational rehabilitation services, and permanency benefits are also available.
Timeline and Other Information
Insurance carriers for businesses in Burlington, VT have twenty-one days from notification to determine validity. You will receive a Form 7 Medical Authorization to your medical records and return it as soon as possible. Delaying this part of the process will only extend the process and the delivery of much-needed relief. Remember that your payments and other benefits can stop if the insurance carrier learns that you are returning to work or given a medical release.
Your employer should furnish you with information about the claims process. The adjuster or insurance carrier representative may want to speak to you at some point about the incident and any possible witnesses to the event. In the meantime, the workers’ comp insurer may begin paying medical benefits while the investigation into your claim continues.
Why You Should Hire a Burlington, Vermont Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
While workers’ compensation claims may be straightforward for some cases in Burlington, Vermont, in others, it may be more difficult. For example, your employer may decide to question whether you were hurt on the clock or your own time. It’s also common for a company to question the full extent of your injury. Hiring a Burlington workers’ comp lawyer ensures that you have an advocate to fight for your rights as a victim.
Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer In Burlington, Vermont
If you are hurt or contract an illness as a result of your job in Burlington, VT you need to find the right people to help. Since the workers’ compensation claims process can have pitfalls, you should consider getting a local attorney who knows how to avoid them.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!