Arizona Workers’ Compensation
It is nationally mandatory for employers to offer workers’ compensation for any of their employees, even if they have only one employee. Workers’ compensation is a “no fault” system, meaning that an employee is entitled to remuneration, regardless of whose fault the injury may have been, as long as they were injured while on the job at work.
This works out to the benefit of both the employee and employer, as an employee is then not allowed to sue or litigate their place of work.
If eligibility requirements are met, the injured party may receive temporary cash benefits and compensation. If an accident occurring at work resulted in an employee’s death, workers’ compensation may cover permanent compensation benefits for their surviving loved ones.
However, applying for, and receiving, workers’ compensation isn’t an entirely easy task, which is all the more reason to get the help of experienced Arizona workers’ compensation lawyers.
Your employer may contest the claim and try to deny you compensation. They may try to posit that the injury you suffered occurred outside of the job, or that you yourself were the cause of your own injury due to your own negligence or disorderly conduct.
If your claim is denied, you may have to file a protest and schedule a court hearing to get the workers’ compensation you are owed. Our team of Phoenix lawyers can help you suss out these legal knots, and get you on the right track to claiming your workers’ compensation.
Workers’ compensation is distributed differently depending on if the injury results in a disability or impairment of some kind. Benefits are classified into various groups, depending on the circumstances of the injury.
-Permanent Impairment Benefits: Benefits given upon a permanent impairment, like a loss of a limb, blindness, or some kind of permanent disfigurement.
-Permanent Total Benefits: Payments provided if the injuries are so severe that the employee can never return to work, which potentially could last through their lifetime.
-Supplemental Benefits: Benefits provided to those who return to work not fully recovered and are unable to do their job to the degree necessary, or if weekly benefits are not enough to support a worker and their loved ones.
-Temporary Partial Benefits: Benefits given to those who can return to work in some limited capacity, working while they recover.
-Temporary Total Benefits: Benefits given to an employee who is prevented from working for a time.
-Death Benefits: Payments given to the family and dependents of an employee who died as a result of an accident on the job.
Employer Responsibilities for Workers’ Compensation
Employers are required by law to supply their employees with workers’ compensation insurance.
If they are found to have not provided their employees with workers’ compensation insurance, then they may face steep fines, face a class-six felony and a subsequent civil lawsuit, or even having their business shut down.
As an employee, you should also be made aware of the steps your employer must take, so as to avoid your workers’ compensation claim being halted in any way.
These negative consequences can be avoided easily by following a few simple steps:
- Provide Insurance
There is simply no getting around this, if you are an employer in Arizona, you must provide workers’ compensation insurance for your employees, or face drastic penalties.
- Offer Employees the Right to Reject the Insurance Plan
Just the same, these employers must make their employees aware of the fact that they may waive their insurance plan if they so choose.
If they do end up doing so, then the employees must waive their insurance in writing, thus preserving their right to a civil lawsuit.
- Provide Injury Information
The employer must provide their employees with the appropriate information following an injury at work, including their workers’ compensation insurance carrier’s name and address, their policy number, and the date of expiration of the insurance coverage.
The employer must also contact the workers’ compensation insurance carrier themselves within 10 days of the injury occurring, as well as the Industrial Commission of Arizona (ICA). They must let them know about the incident and fill out the proper forms and paperwork.
- Cooperate with Investigations and Inquiries
The employer must not in any way interrupt, restrict, or hide evidence from the ensuing investigation following an on-the-job injury. They must make available any information or photographic and/or video evidence, or face further civil lawsuits.
Steps You Can Take Today
Once you’re injured, you should report it to your employer as soon as you can. While you do have a year to file a workers’ compensation claim, whether it’s a year after the injury itself occurred or a year after you first became aware of the injury, but you must let your employer know of the injury within 30 days of its occurrence, under Arizona law.
If you or a loved one have been injured at the place of your employment, or if a wrongful death has taken place, contact the attorneys at Torgenson Law.
We are a professional group of highly trained Phoenix personal injury lawyers who you can trust to defend your rights and help you reclaim any compensation for damages and loss of life that you or a loved one may have suffered.