Worker’s Comp in the State of Indiana- Understanding Your Rights & Coverage
Written by Cooper & Friedman on February 21, 2020
Getting injured on a job can have a significant impact on your life, especially if the injury is permanent. Treatment and recovery can be challenging, emotionally draining, and expensive. Fortunately, most companies in the State of Indiana are legally required to offer Worker’s Compensation. Employees need to understand the full extent of their rights, coverage, and eligibility. Here we discuss everything you need to know about Worker’s Comp in Indiana.
What is the Coverage?
Almost every company in Indiana offers Worker’s Comp to their permanent employees, but independent contractors and railroad employees are exempt. Indiana laws don’t expressly exclude domestic workers, but their position is somewhat unclear. They don’t have full protection, despite being vulnerable to abuse, exploitation, and injuries.
Physical injuries are always eligible for compensation, and the amount is proportionate to its severity. Indiana also allows workers to claim compensation for mental injuries like panic attacks or PTSD. The injured party must undergo comprehensive psychological testing to prove it.
Workers can also gain compensation if an old injury flares up as a result of a more recent workplace incident. For example, if you hurt your knee in an accident a few years ago and sustained another injury at the workplace that made it worse, you can get compensation. Temporary and Worker’s Comp also covers leased employees working with a staffing agency. The agency is responsible for the coverage.
You don’t need to prove your employer is liable. However, employers can defend themselves. They can claim and try to prove that you intentionally harmed yourself.
What are the Benefits?
If your injuries prove to be compensable after a thorough investigation, an employer will have to offer the benefits mentioned below:
- Lost Wages Compensation – Workers are entitled to 2/3rd of their average weekly wage as they recover. A reputable physician approved by the insurance company will recommend a recovery time, and you will receive compensation accordingly. For example, if the authorized physician orders three weeks of rest, the company will compensate you for three weeks of lost wages.
- Payment for Medical Expenses – Worker’s Comp will pay for all your medical expenses. Your employer and their insurance company will choose a doctor or medical facility for treatment.
- Out of Pocket Expenses – Workers get reimbursement for all out-of-pocket expenses, including medication costs, transport to the hospital, physical therapy, etc.
- Permanent Partial Impairment – If your doctor decides you have sustained permanent impairment as a result of workplace injury, the employer will have to provide compensation for permanent partial impairment.
These are the most essential compensations provided under Worker’s Comp coverage. However, workers are also eligible for smaller benefits like transport costs, additional compensation in case of amputation, and other such factors. Discuss the case with a reliable lawyer to understand the full extent of your compensation.
Facts to Remember
The priority is to get treated for the injury. Delays can complicate the claims process and affect the amount of compensation you get. For example, if a worker decides to ignore the injury for the first couple of days and only visits the doctor after the discomfort becomes too much to bear, the insurance company will try to reduce the compensation amount. The company may consider the delay a self-inflicted injury.
An employee must notify their employer within 30 days of the injury and file a claim within two years. You’re only allowed to choose a doctor if there’s an emergency. If the treatment isn’t urgent, you will have to get treatment from a medical professional in the insurance company’s network.
When you hire Cooper and Friedman PLLC as your law firm, your case will never be handled by a paralegal or secretary. One of our experienced attorneys will directly handle your case. For additional information or a free case consultation, please call us now at: 502-459-7555.