The NJ Workers’ Compensation Process
It’s a well-known fact that laws differ from state to state, and workers’ compensation laws are no different. If you are residing in the state of New Jersey and get injured at work, then here is what you need to be aware of when you are filing for a workers’ compensation.
Benefits under workers’ compensation
If your claim is accepted, then you are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. You may be eligible for medical, disability, partial and/or permanent benefits when you are injured at work or have contracted a condition that is work-related.
Medical benefits: Treatment for your work-related injury or disease is covered under medical benefits. Medical benefits include physiotherapy, hospital visits and other procedures that could be required in your case.
Under New Jersey law if you have a work-related injury then your employer or the insurance provider of your company may choose your doctor for treatment. Your medical bills may not be covered if you choose a doctor who isn’t authorized by the insurance provider for treatment.
Temporary disability: If you are out of work or are unable to recover from your work-related injury for seven or more days then you are eligible for temporary disability benefits. In New Jersey, you will receive 70% of your wages, subject to the maximum limit set by the state. The temporary disability benefits end when your doctor certifies you are fit enough to start work again.
Permanent Partial Disability: If you have sustained a permanent injury, like a disabled finger, but are still capable of doing some work then you may be eligible for permanent partial disability. These benefits start once you have reached a point where no further medical treatment can improve your condition.
The amount of benefits depends on the disability rating assigned by your doctor and also on the part of the body part you have injured. The NJ workers’ compensation rulebook consists of a list which contains the injury and the number of benefits for each that you would be eligible for.
Permanent Total Disability: If your work injury makes you permanently disabled then you may be eligible for permanent total disability. You will receive a weekly payment which is similar to a pension. The ceiling of the benefit amount is 70% of your average weekly pay.
You can refer to the State of New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Developmentwebsite.
Filing a Claim
In New Jersey, you must file your workers’ compensation within 90 days of your injury. If you do not file within the stipulated time, then you may lose the right to claim your benefit. Once you notify your employer, he, in turn, will notify his insurance company. The insurance company files your claim, and you start receiving benefits once your claim has been approved. If you claim is denied then you can appeal against it.
Appealing for a Denied Claim
You can file a claim if your benefits were denied or there was a dispute between your employer and you. You can file a Formal Claim Petition or Application for Informal Hearing. After filing, your case will be assigned to a court and judge depending on your county of residence. A formal hearing takes longer to resolve than an informal one.
Whatever your case may be, there are certain things you must remember when you file a claim.
- Do not agree to give any recorded or sworn statements. It may work against you.
- Talk to a work injury lawyer before filing your claim.
- If your employer lures you for a settlement, then do not agree to it. Your benefits will most likely be lower than what you will get with workers’ compensation.
If you have been injured at work, you are not alone. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney at Goldberg & Wolf can help you navigate through the complex process of filing a claim and make sure that you get the compensation you are entitled. Contact the Law Offices of Goldberg & Wolf today at (856)-651-1600 for a free consultation.