In South Carolina, most employers must carry a minimum amount of compensation to cover employees in the event of injury. South Carolina worker’s compensation laws apply to most full-time, part-time, and seasonal employees. An employer with four or more employees must pay for injuries if an employee cannot work for over seven days due to a workplace-related injury or illness.
Benefits of Worker’s Compensation in South Carolina
After a workplace accident, many employees wonder about their benefits. Worker’s compensation insurance offers a variety of benefits to help injured workers cope with injuries or illnesses, but it does not fully compensate an employee for lost wages and income. Depending on the injury, length of time away from work, and the policy, an injured employee may receive compensation for:
- Medical Expenses. Most policies cover all medical expenses including surgeries, physical therapy, prescription medications, and travel expenses. To obtain full medical coverage, remember to keep all invoices and receipts for medical treatments.
- Income Support. Worker’s compensation policies never provide 100% coverage for lost income after an injury, but they do cover a percentage of weekly wages. In our state, injured employees can obtain 66 or 2/3% of an average weekly wage. To determine the amount payed each week, the state will evaluate your average weekly payments from the previous year.
- Retraining Costs. In workplace explosions, exposure to hazardous substances, and other serious workplace incidents, an employee may never fully recover from the accident. In the event that an employee needs retraining for the same or a different job, the policy will cover all the costs of retraining and rehabilitation.
- Permanent Injury Compensation. If your injury permanently compromises your ability to work, you may receive permanent partial or full disability. To determine the amount you receive to cover your injury, the adjustors will consider your individual needs and also provide 66% or 2/3 of your average wages.
- Survivor Benefits. In catastrophic accidents, an employee may die onsite or as the result of life-threatening injuries sustained while on-the-job. In the event of an on-the-job death, workers’ compensation coverage offers benefits for the familial survivors left behind.
To protect your right to obtain benefits through a worker’s compensation policy, always report on-the-job accidents to a supervisor and check back with him or her to ensure the company begins the worker’s compensation process.
How Attorneys Support Employees in Worker’s Comp Claims
In most worker’s compensation cases, an employee files the appropriate paperwork and begins receiving prompt payments for the duration of his or her absence. However, claims do not always go according to plan. An employer may fail to initiate the worker’s compensation process. A worker’s compensation insurer may deny or delay coverage. After receiving approval, an injured worker may not receive regular payments to support his or her needs during recovery. In any of the above situations, an employee may need support from a worker’s compensation attorney.
An attorney can help his or her clients from the beginning of the claims process. Worker’s compensation coverage often requires detailed paperwork. One error or omission could delay compensation for weeks or months at a time. Attorneys understand the timeframe for submission as well as the content needed. You can count on an attorney to guide you through the submission process from your first claim until you last appeal.
In addition to due diligence, attorneys often play a crucial role in confronting unfair practices. By law, insurance companies must handle claims in a timely and fair manner. If an insurance adjustor rejects your claim based on unethical judgment or fails to notify you of the company’s decision within a specific timeframe, your attorney may recommend taking action against the company for bad faith. After receiving approval, a legal representative can also ensure you receive fair payments for the duration of coverage.
Worker’s compensation claims often require constant negotiation and time management skills. Consider hiring a SC Work Comp Attorney if you believe an employer or insurer has treated you unfairly during the claims process. Call today! 888-HAWK-LAW
HawkLaw services work comp claims throughout the entire state of South Carolina, or at our Charleston, Greenville, Spartanburg, and Columbia law offices.