When filing a workers’ compensation claim in New Jersey, there are many hidden aspects of the law. Below are some facts about New Jersey’s Workers’ Compensation law:
- An employer must provide medical treatment related to the accident that will provide a “cure.”
- The injured worker must use a physician that is approved by the employer for treatment.
- The employer is obligated to pay ALL of the medical bills, which includes co-pays, prescriptions, physical therapy, medical devices, and deductibles.
- If physical therapy fails, the worker may be referred to a specialist.
- Temporary benefits will end when the physician declares the worker’s condition has achieved “maximum medical improvement,” the worker returned to work, or the worker has reached the statutory 400 weeks.
- The New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Law provides medical benefits, temporary disability benefits, permanent partial benefits, permanent total benefits, and death benefits.
- There are some circumstances where extended treatment is warranted. The worker must contact a workers’ compensation lawyer to see if he or she is eligible.
- The labor law in New Jersey states that the worker is entitled to 70% of the worker’s gross weekly wage. The worker cannot receive more than $896 per week and less than $239 per week.
- The worker must be under the care of an approved physician and not able to work for a full seven days before receiving wage replacement.
- On the eighth day, the worker is out of work, he or she qualifies for workers’ compensation benefits. Please note: The worker can be out of work for a total of seven days, and they do not have to be consecutive.
- The worker will receive benefits if the physician declares the worker is unable to work or can work in a limited capacity (light duty).
- If the employer can provide light duty work, the worker must return to work and perform the job duties.
- When the worker is left with a permanent injury and cannot perform his or her old job duties, the worker may have rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act or the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination.
- The employer is not obligated to open a new position for the worker if he/she can not go back to their old job due to the injury.
- An employee will receive workers’ compensation benefits regardless of who is at fault. It is against the law for an employer to discriminate against an employee who has filed a workers’ compensation claim or the employee who testifies in a workers’ compensation case.
- If the workers’ compensation claim is disputed, the worker may file a formal claim petition or an application for an informal hearing with the Division of Workers’ Compensation.
- By law, New Jersey employers not covered by federal programs must have workers’ compensation insurance or be approved for self-insurance.
- Partial permanent disability benefits are based on the percentage of certain “scheduled” and “non-scheduled” losses. For example, a “scheduled” loss involves arms, fingers, legs, feet, eyes, ears or teeth. A “non-scheduled” loss includes any area or system of the body not identified in the schedule (i.e. the lungs and heart).
- If the worker is permanently disabled and cannot be gainfully employed, the worker may receive permanent total benefits for 450 weeks. These benefits can extend beyond 450 weeks provided the worker can prove he or she cannot work anymore. A permanent total disability is when the worker has lost two major members of his or her body (i.e. hands or legs). It can also mean that a combination of injuries has rendered the worker unemployable.
- An employer or its insurance company is responsible for paying up to $3,500 for funeral expenses for the worker who was killed from a work-related injury.
These workers’ compensation facts may not apply to you if you were injured in another state, this is because workers’ compensation laws differ from state to state. If you were hurt at work in Pennsylvania and need help with your claim, contact our good friends at Krasno, Krasno & Onwudinjo.