Workers Compensation in Dallas, TX
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 Texas 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 Dallas, TX workers’ compensation insurance, and how the process works.
Workers Compensation Statistics in Dallas, Texas ?
According to the Texas Department of Insurance, most work injuries take place in the retail industry. The health care, food service, and manufacturing fields also report high injury rates. The most common injuries are sprains, strains, and tears, followed by cuts and fractures. These injuries are typically the result of contact with equipment, falls, or overexertion. Workplace injuries range from minor to severe, but about 30% of injuries cause the employee to miss more than 30 days of work.
How Does Workers Comp Work in Dallas, Texas ?
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.
The Texas Workforce Commission notes that Texas is one of the few states that does not require most employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance. However, the coverage is required for government employers, as well as for some construction, motor carrier, and gas or propane companies.
If your employer does not have workers’ compensation coverage, you can pursue damages in civil court. If they do, potential included benefits are medical expenses, death benefits, and lost wages. Compensation for lost wages is recoverable if your injury causes you to miss more than a week of work. According to the Texas Department of Insurance, by law, this weekly payment cannot be any less than $146. Or any more than $1007. However, you should note that these caps are adjusted every year.
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 Dallas, TX are critical for the 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 Dallas, TX 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 occurred 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. All 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 on the job in Dallas, you have 30 days to report the injury to your employer. You are also required to file a claim with the Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation within one year. These deadlines run from the date of injury or the date of discovery of the injury, whichever is later.
Timeline and Other Information
Temporary disability benefits in Texas are limited to 104 weeks. If your doctor determines that your condition will not improve, you can be eligible for permanent disability benefits. If this happens, your doctor will determine a percentage value for your disability. That percentage will be multiplied by three to determine how many weeks of coverage you can receive. If your injury is especially severe, supplemental or lifetime benefits can become available.
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. Typically about the incident and to 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 Dallas, Texas Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
While workers’ compensation claims may be straightforward for some cases in Dallas, Texas , in others, it may be more difficult. For example, your employer may decide to question whether you were hurt on the clock or on your own time. It’s also common for a company to question the full extent of your injury. Hiring a Dallas workers’ comp lawyer ensures that you have an advocate to fight for your rights as a victim.
Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer In Dallas, Texas
If you are hurt or contract an illness as a result of your job in Dallas, TX 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!