Workers Compensation in California
If you’ve been hurt on the job, it’s important to understand your rights. These rights can vary from state to state, so California law is what matters here. In the State of California, the workers compensation system works on a no-fault basis.
This system is designed to benefit both workers and employers. Instead of having to take your employer to court to prove that your injury was their fault, you only need to prove that you were hurt on the job. So, what are you entitled to? Let’s take a closer look.
What You’re Entitled to Under Workers Compensation
California workers are covered for all medical treatments related to workplace-related injuries. In addition to medical treatment, workers are also covered for the cost of any evaluations. Prescription drugs, transportation, and even medical aid devices like wheelchairs are also covered.
In addition to medical treatments, workers are also entitled to temporary disability payments. These payments provide compensation for missed work due to injury, at a rate of up to two thirds of the worker’s weekly wage. These benefits will be paid out for up to 104 weeks for most individuals. Workers with certain medical conditions can qualify for 240 weeks of disability.
If a worker is permanently disabled and unable to return to the workforce, they may be entitled to permanent disability payments. These payments depend on the worker’s age, their occupation, the type of disability, and any doctor’s work restrictions. These payments can last for as long as 14 years.
Workers who are considered more than 70% disabled may also be eligible for life pension payments. These payments are smaller than permanent disability payments, but a you can receive them for the rest of your life. If a worker dies as a result of a work-related injury, their spouse or dependents are eligible for death benefits. These benefits vary based on a variety of factors, and include burial expenses.
Finally, for workers who need to switch careers due to a workplace injury, the State of California pays a supplemental job displacement benefit for vocational retraining costs. This is a non-cash, $6,000 voucher for education or job retraining at certain schools.
All of these benefits, including non-tax benefits, are tax-exempt. This makes them different from other state benefits, such as unemployment benefits, which are not tax-exempt.
In addition to workers compensation payments, you may also be entitled to other payments. If you were disabled due to a workplace-related injury or illness, you may be entitled to state disability insurance (SDI) or Social Security disability payments (SSDI). Moreover, if you were injured due to the actions of a third party or the failure of a third-party product, you may be entitled to additional compensation.
As you can see, navigating this minefield can be confusing. A qualified legal professional can improve your chances of getting compensation. The team at KJT LAW GROUP can help. You can contact us via our website, call us at (818) 507-8525 , or contact us for a free consultation.