Am I covered?
It’s the question that immediately comes to mind for many employees upon suffering a workplace injury, wondering if they are indeed entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.
While the workers’ comp eligibility process may seem complicated on the surface, having a basic understanding of the three main factors dictating coverage provides a degree of clarity to even the murkiest situations. And when you know where you stand beforehand, you can ease your stress level should you ever find yourself the victim of a workplace accident.
Here are the three primary factors affecting workers’ comp eligibility:
1. Your Employer Carries Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Most companies are legally required to carry workers’ comp insurance. While some states don’t mandate coverage for companies with a small number of employees, Ohio law requires an active worker’s comp policy regardless of company size. Still, since exceptions do exist, it’s worthwhile to double check with a trusted legal expert like Taubman Law, especially if your employer claims to be exempt from your state’s workers’ comp statute.
2. You Truly Qualify as an Employee of That Company
Generally-speaking, independent contractors and volunteers do not qualify as employees from the standpoint of workers’ comp coverage. However, because employers often wrongly classify workers as independent contractors when they should, in fact, be considered full-fledge employees, you should consult your attorney should you have any doubt regarding your employment status.
3. Your Injury or Illness Occurred as a Result Employment
Assuming you suffered a work-related injury or illness, then you’re likely eligible to receive workers’ comp benefits. Of course, many contributing factors can impact eligibility and a fair amount of gray area exists. For instance, if you were intoxicated while at work or if your injury didn’t occur at work yet had some connection with your job, it may prove more difficult to achieve workers’ comp coverage.
Ultimately, when your personal circumstance seems complicated, you need legal representation that can cut through the fog and achieve clarity. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney could mean the difference between receiving a determination of ineligibility or securing adequate benefits coverage.
At Taubman Law we strive to ensure you receive the workers’ compensation benefits you deserve. We will advise you of your rights and fight your legal battle tirelessly on your behalf.
This post was written by Cleveland attorney Bruce D. Taubman, who practices workers’ compensation, personal injury and medical malpractice throughout Ohio. throughout Ohio.