Workers Compensation in Portland, ME

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 Maine 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 Portland, ME workers’ compensation insurance and how the process works.

Workers Compensation Statistics in Portland, Maine?

Portland, like other cities, does not report injuries or illnesses to the Department of Labor. It’s necessary to rely on local and national trends to understand the entire situation. In November 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Statistics published that over 40,000 people work in transportation, trade, and utility industries in Portland. Assuming the U.S. Department of Labor trend applies, 3.4 out of every 100 had to report a work-related incident for workers’ compensation.

How Does Workers Comp Work in Portland, Maine?

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.

All employers must have a workers’ compensation policy in Portland. Only a limited number of exemptions exist for particular individuals. Agricultural or aquaculture businesses with six or fewer employees may carry liability insurance instead. Since 1993, Maine has provided a generous 90% of average salaries per week as compensation for lost wages. Costs associated with caring for your illness or injury also get reimbursed.

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 Portland, ME 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 Portland, ME 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.

When you go to the doctor for your illness or injury, don’t forget to tell them that your symptoms were from a work-related incident. You must inform your employer within 30 days of discovering your condition. They have a seven-day deadline to send a First Report of Injury to the Workers’ Compensation Board. As long as your claim gets the thumbs up, the board will pay ⅔ of your average monthly wage. The maximum you may receive, as of 2020, is $889.34 per week.

Timeline and Other Information

State law in Maine requires that workers’ compensation beneficiaries wait ten days before receiving reimbursements. If your treatment requires more than two weeks of rest and care, you will receive payment for that time. By law, insurance companies have 14 days to accept or deny your claim. Partial incapacity that persists can allow you to receive benefits for up to 520 weeks.

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 Portland, Maine Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

While workers’ compensation claims may be straightforward for some cases in Portland, Portland workers’ comp lawyer ensures that you have an advocate to fight for your rights as a victim.

Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer In Portland, Maine

If you are hurt or contract an illness as a result of your job in Portland, ME 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!

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