The worker’s compensation program is a system of laws that is meant to protect workers injured at their workplace.
The goal is to ensure that injured workers get appropriate medical care and compensation for lost wages due to injury. In some cases, the worker’s compensation program also provides for rehabilitation and retraining so that the worker is able to return to work and start earning their livelihood. In case of death at a workplace, the survivors of the diseased worker are provided death benefits.
When an Employer Denies Benefits
Kansas worker’s compensation lawyers are of the opinion that although employers are legally bound to provide worker’s compensation, there might be cases when the employer tries to delay or deny compensation citing various reasons. In such cases, it is important that the injured worker understands their rights, and knows that they have a legal recourse they can pursue. Here is a quick look at a worker’s rights under the worker’s compensation program.
Injuries Excluded From Worker’s Compensation Coverage
Worker’s compensation includes all injuries that are suffered in the “course and scope” of the work. However, the injuries or deaths resulting out of the worker’s own misconduct or intoxication may not be covered under the worker’s compensation program. Apart from this, minor injuries, injuries suffered while commuting, or when out of office for lunch may not qualify for worker’s compensation.
Special Worker’s Compensation Statutes
• The Merchant Marine Act (The Jones Act) provides seamen the right to demand benefits known as maintenance and cure in case they get injured because of their employer’s negligence while operating on US flagged vessels.
• The Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act (LHWCA) provides benefits to some classes of employees of the private maritime sector.
• The Federal Employment Liability Act (FELA) provides rights to railroad workers to get compensation for injuries that result from the railroad’s negligence.
• The Black Lung Benefits Act provides benefits to miners that suffer from pneumoconiosis or black lung disease.
Workers Compensation Litigation
An employee who has suffered severe work related injuries may find it difficult to get compensation from their employer. Such employees can consult one of the experienced Kansas worker’s compensation attorneys to receive their compensation benefits. An important thing that workers should know is that they cannot file a personal injury lawsuit against their employer unless the employer has intentionally caused harm, or has failed to obtain worker’s compensation insurance even though they are required to have it.
Worker’s injury litigation is not as difficult as personal injury litigation, because it takes place in a simpler, administrative set up, and quite often, involves relaxed evidentiary rules. In case you are denied your rightful worker’s compensation benefits, asked to return to work even though you are not physically fit, or if the physician chosen by the employer declares you fit to return to work even though you do not feel so, you should consult The Law Office of James M. Hoffmann at (816) 256-4300. The attorney’s fees are limited by statute.