May 15, 2019
By Rebecca Batisto
Workers’ comp is one of those topics that is usually discussed during employee onboarding, then rarely mentioned again. That is, until it becomes important, which tends to be after a work-related injury. When that happens, having some familiarity with the details of your workers’ comp policy can make the difference between an emotionally and physically-draining struggle and recovering relatively stress-free.
If you are covered by workers’ comp, you may not be aware of all the benefits you can receive. These can include everything from medical checkups to death benefits. These are some of the areas where workers’ comp often covers things you might not realize are covered in your policy:
While, yes, you can usually expect workers’ comp to cover your medical care related to your injury, you might not know that it also includes things ranging from long-term care costs to regular checkups.
Immediately after an injury, you can expect your visit to the emergency room and your ambulance ride (if applicable) to be covered. Workers’ comp also usually covers diagnostic tests, like MRIs or X-rays, to accurately diagnose your injury. You will probably need to see your doctor more than once so they can gauge your recovery and make adjustments to your treatment. Doctor checkups, as well as trips to specialists if required by your injury, should also be covered. Please keep in mind however, that your employer might select these doctors.
Depending on your home state and policy, conditions that crop up as a result of your original injury might also be covered. For example, if you develop a back injury as a result of an injured foot, you might be able to gain legitimate treatment for that condition. And that’s not all. It’s rare, but you might find that some alternative therapies, such as acupuncture, are covered by some policies.
In every one of these cases, you should confirm that these medical expenses are covered in your employer’s policy before racking up any medical expenses.
If your work-related injury requires care over a period of time, then your rehabilitation costs will likely be covered. This could include trips to physical therapists and other medical professionals who will help you regain your physical ability to the greatest extent possible.
However, there might be a situation where a workplace-related injury creates a chronic condition requiring ongoing care. Thankfully, even if your injury prevents you from ever returning to work, workers’ comp could help with the long-term costs of care.
One of the most significant stresses after a work-related injury is the fear that you will no longer be able to work, thus cutting off your income at a time when it is desperately needed. Fortunately, workers’ comp may cover at least some of your lost wages while you recover.
While workers’ comp covers some mental health conditions, it’s a much more complicated area than with a physical injury, and it depends on the laws in the state where you work.
Workers can typically only claim workers’ compensation benefits if the mental health condition being claimed came about as the result of a physical injury. Workers’ comp is usually only given out if someone has received a provable workplace-related injury. Therefore, you must be able to prove that your mental health condition was directly caused by something at your job. PTSD or crippling anxiety are examples of mental health conditions that could be covered by workers’ comp under the right circumstances.
Mental health conditions also may not be covered in every state.
We are all concerned about the financial burden that we might put on our families after we are gone. Thankfully, your workers’ comp could cover funeral costs and other expenses associated with death.
Not only that, but some workers’ comp insurance may also include death benefits that could help provide for your family through support payments.
Of course, these are all just examples of the types of benefits that some workers’ comp policies cover. Not all policies are the same, so to be 100% sure about your coverage, you should talk to human resources at your place of employment. Finding out what is covered before you need it is smart and could prove to be helpful should you find yourself in the position of having to claim benefits.
Accidents can happen even at the safest companies. Taking proper action immediately following the claim is crucial to getting critical care. At Normandy Insurance, we can help you navigate the headaches of a workers’ comp claim. Click here to find out how to report a claim with us, or to contact us for more information on how we can help you, your small business, or your employer.