Workers compensation is an insurance program, that guarantees workers protection, under the law if injured on the job. As the oldest insurance program in the United States, workers compensations have strict guidelines and regulations that employers have to adhere to. Filing a claim is the first step, but it may not be enough.
After the industrial revolution of the 20th century, workplace injuries became a common thing, especially in factories. The addition of heavy machinery, cause the need for workers compensation to expand rapidly. Prior to worker’s compensation laws, an injured or disabled worker would have to sue the company. Unfortunately, working minimum wage didn’t allow most the luxury of hiring a lawyer.
When filing for worker’s compensation, you may still want to hire a specialized attorney in this matter. Your employer already have their lawyers armed and ready to defend their integrity. There will be a few defenses your employer may use, in order to get out of paying:
Just apart of the job- The injury was just a normal and accepted part of the job.
Co-worker Rule- The injury was because of someone else that worked for the company.
Negligence on your behalf- The blame is being placed on your negligence.
On top of this, workers without an attorney may have to wait longer for possible financial compensation. This will be a devastating hit to the financial security of a worker who is physically unable to work. The amount that one could receive for their workers compensation may be substantially lower if they do not have legal assistance behind them.
The idea of workers compensation began in 1884 in Germany. This was established after a series of factory workers became terminally ill, due to unsanitary work conditions. This law was originally called the Sickness and Accident act. Not long after, the rest of Europe established similar laws. The first U.S. workers compensation law was passed in 1908.