Work Injury Attorneys
Workplace safety is critically important. Federal and state laws have been enacted to protect the health and safety of employees. While these efforts have resulted in reductions in workplace injury and fatality rates, some employees in New Jersey are still injured or sickened at work each year.
The New Jersey workers’ compensation system is in place to protect employees who have been injured or sickened at work. If you have suffered work related injuries or occupational illness, you might be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation benefits provide coverage for people who have been injured at work and are entitled to compensation. These types of benefits might pay for all of an injured worker’s related health care costs and medical expenses. Workers who are partially or totally disabled may also be eligible for disability benefits to replace a percentage of their former income.
Because of the availability of workers’ compensation, employees are generally not allowed to file negligence lawsuits against their employers. However, there are certain situations in which an injured worker might be allowed to sue an employer or a third party that contributed to his or her accident and workplace injuries.
The workers comp team at Hoffman DiMuzio are highly experienced and have represented injured workers and their families in South Jersey since 1978. We are the largest general practice law firm in the region and have established a strong reputation based on our dedicated advocacy and skilled representation. We strongly believe that our clients deserve to be fairly compensated when they have been injured at work. To find out if you have a workers’ compensation claim or if you want to find out if an injury attorney can help, please call 856.637.3000 for a free consultation.
Understanding Workers’ Comp
The workers’ comp system in New Jersey requires employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance to protect their employees. Since injured employees can file claims with their employers’ insurance carriers, they generally cannot file lawsuits against them. However, if you have been injured on the job or have contracted an occupational disease, you do not have to prove that your employer was negligent to recover benefits.
To collect benefits, you will not be required to prove someone was at fault. This means it does not matter who was at fault in causing your accident and injuries as long as they occurred while you were working. However, workers’ comp claims have stringent filing requirements and strict deadlines. If your employer or the insurance carrier disputes your claim, you might have to go to a hearing.
Benefits from workers’ compensation claims cover all of the medical costs related to an employee’s workplace injury. This means that you will not have any copays and will not have to use your own health insurance. In addition, workers’ compensation benefits people who suffer temporary or permanent disabilities because of their accidents. While these benefits will not replace all of your former income, they do pay a percentage of what you used to earn. Unlike negligence lawsuits, however, workers’ comp benefits do not include compensation for pain and suffering losses.
Examples of Compensable Work Injuries for Workers’ Compensation Claims
Workers’ compensation claim benefits cover injuries and illnesses that are caused at work. Some of the types of injuries that might qualify for benefits include the following:
- Fall-related injuries
- Hazardous chemical exposures
- Repetitive injuries
- Head injuries
- Car accidents while working*
- Truck accidents while working*
- Spinal cord injuries
- Occupational hearing loss
- Burn injuries
- Arc flash injuries
- Serious lacerations
- Traumatic brain injuries
*If you were in a car accident or truck accident while working, you can claim benefits.
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Types of Benefits Through New Jersey Workers’ Compensation
There are several different types of benefits available through workers’ comp in New Jersey. Medical benefits are available to cover the costs of any related medical treatment that might be necessary. This includes the costs of emergency medical care, medical equipment such as prosthetic devices, rehabilitation costs, and prescription drug costs. New Jersey allows your employer to choose the doctor who will provide treatment to you. If you instead receive care from an unauthorized doctor, your employer might reject paying your medical bills.
Temporary total disability workers’ comp benefits are available if you are left with temporary, total disabilities because of your workplace accident. These benefits pay up to 70% of the gross weekly income up to a maximum amount if you are unable to return to work to help cover lost wages. You can continue receiving these benefits each week until you have reached your maximum medical improvement. However, you cannot receive temporary total disability benefits for longer than 400 weeks.
There are also two types of permanent disability, including permanent partial and permanent total disability. Permanent partial disabilities will provide up to 70% of your former gross wages. You can receive these when the disabling condition keeps you from returning to work at your full capacity. You can receive these benefits for up to 600 weeks or up to a statutorily established amount. You might receive an additional 30% if you suffered an amputation.
Permanent total workers compensation coverage pays up to 70% of your gross former wages when you are unable to work again because of your work-related injury or illness. These benefits can be received for up to 450 weeks. In some cases, they might be payable for life.
If workers are killed on the job, their immediate surviving family members can pursue death benefits. These benefits through the insurance company cover the family’s reasonable funeral and burial expenses and provide payments for up to 70% of the deceased worker’s former average wages. These payments can be paid to the dependents for up to 450 weeks, until they reach age 18, or until they reach age 23 if they are enrolled full-time in college. Surviving spouses who do not remarry can continue receiving benefits through the compensation insurance company.
Third-Party Compensation Claims
Some workplace accidents involve third-party non-employers that are at fault. When an employee is injured while on the job by a third party, he or she can file a workers’ comp claim with the employer and a negligence lawsuit against the third party. This is important because a negligence lawsuit against a third party can provide more compensation than the workers’ comp claim can, including for physical pain and suffering damages.
Workers’ comp is also not available to non-employees such as independent contractors. When they are injured because of the negligence of the company where they perform work, they can file lawsuits against the company. However, they will have to prove fault to prevail in their claims.
Call A Work Injury Attorney For A FREE Case Evaluation
A workers comp attorney has reached the rare milestone of being granted certification in the field of workers’ compensation legal practice.
If you were injured while working or have learned that you have contracted an occupational illness, you might be entitled to pursue compensation through a work injury claim. An injury lawyer for work injury claims at Hoffman DiMuzio can review what happened and help you to determine the types of compensation that might be available to you after sustaining a serious personal injury.
We are the largest full-service law firm in South Jersey and have offices in five towns, allowing you to meet with a lawyer at a location that is convenient for you. We also provide in-person or virtual consultations based on your choice. Your lawyer will accommodate whichever method is most convenient for you.
Our workers comp injury lawyers have won millions of dollars for the hardworking people of South Jersey. We are dedicated to our clients and provide a full range of legal services. To learn more about your rights regarding your compensation claim, schedule a free consultation with a work injury attorney by chat, email, or phone. Your lawyer will fight tooth-and-nail on your compensation claim against the insurance companies to get you the compensation you deserve.