Accidents and injuries are an unfortunate reality in every profession. This is especially true in high risk work environments, such as construction, factory work, or truck driving. Accidents in any field may occur as the result of negligence, recklessness, or completely unavoidable circumstances. However, any of these accidents may result in disastrous and even life-threatening injuries. If you were injured while performing your duties at work, you have a right to file a worker’s compensation claim.
Workers’ compensation is an insurance policy that provides medical care and a percentage of wages to injured employees after an accident or illness at work. If you work for a business that has four or more employees, the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission requires your company to carry this type of insurance.
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Under South Carolina law, you are eligible for workers’ compensation as either a full-time or part-time employee; however, independent contractors may not qualify. It is important to understand your employer’s workers’ compensation policy, to understand the specifics of who and what their policy will cover after an accident.
Every job has different requirements and safety hazards, which can lead to a serious work-related accident. You may have a valid workers’ compensation claim in a variety of different circumstances, after an accident at work. Some of the most common work-related injuries and illnesses include:
- Cuts and lacerations
- Strains, sprains, and dislocations
- Fractured or broken bones
- Neck and spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Toxin exposure illnesses
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Hearing loss
These health concerns may be the result of a single accident at work or due to long-term exposure to your work environment. In either case, a workers’ compensation claim could pay for the medical expenses or lost time from work, as a result of these problems.
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Work-related accidents may result in debilitating injuries, which require extensive treatment and rehabilitation to overcome. In the worst-case scenario, a worker may be killed on the job or succumb to a fatal illness. In this situation, surviving family members could be eligible for death benefits to help them pay for funeral and burial costs and other expenses.
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Although workers’ compensation will pay for many injuries that occur at work, certain circumstances may prevent you from successfully claiming workers’ compensation. The most common problem that people face, when filing for worker’s compensation, is proving that their injury occurred because of the work they were performing. Your employer may deny your claim in certain situations, such as:
- Self-inflicted injuries
- Stress-based or psychological injuries
- Injuries caused by horseplay or fighting
- Injuries while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Injuries during the commute to work
- Injuries during a lunch break
These circumstances can make filing a workers’ compensation claim more difficult, but that does always not mean that you do not have a claim. Many employees fear the repercussions of filing a workers’ compensation. South Carolina is a right-to-work state, meaning that a work contract can easily be ended for many reasons. However, injured workers are protected against severe employer retaliation. While your employer cannot fire you for filing a workers’ compensation, they may reassign you or expect you to return as soon as you have medical approval. Some employers may try to misrepresent your injury, under one of these categories, to avoid paying you the compensation that you deserve.
If you or a loved one were injured at work, you have a right to file for workers’ compensation benefits. The attorneys at Hammack Law Firm are ready to fight on your behalf, so you can receive the money you need to recover after a serious accident. Contact Hammack Law Firm today at 864-326-3333 for help with your workers’ compensation claim.
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To get started with our Greenville personal injury law firm, please simply contact us online or call 864-326-3333 for a free consultation.