One of our NC Board Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialists, Barry Jennings, recently answered this question on our YouTube channel.
Basically, there are two main types of workers’ compensation benefits in North Carolina:
- Medical Benefits
If you’ve been hurt at work, and your workers’ compensation claim has been approved, then whatever care you need to get better (that’s been approved) should be covered 100% by your workers’ compensation insurance company. There are no co-pays or deductibles.You shouldn’t even have to miss work for your treatments or pay for travel expenses (if you have to drive over 20 miles roundtrip).If you’re injured at work, medical care benefits may be paid to you if the item will:
- cure the injury
- lessen the disability
- or relieve your pain
Benefits can range from traditional treatments, to items such as attendant care, medical equipment and even home modifications.
However, it’s worth noting that the insurance company has the right to direct your medical care – which includes choosing which doctors you see, when you see them, and what treatments you receive. If you’re unhappy with the medical care you are receiving, a workers’ compensation attorney may be able to help.
- Wage Replacement Benefits
If your work injuries or occupational disease prevent you from being able to work, then you may be eligible for wage replacement benefits.Wage replacement benefits are designed to supplement your income while you’re still recovering or to make up the difference, if you have to take a pay cut.You may be able to receive wage replacement benefits if:
- You’re temporarily unable to work due to your injuries.
- You can work, but you’re not earning as much (such as switching to part-time or a less-strenuous position) to accommodate your injuries.
- Your injuries result in permanent disabilities.
- A loved one died as a result of a work accident or disease.
You may even be eligible for “vocational rehabilitation benefits,” such as resume help or educational opportunities, if you need help finding a new job after a work injury.
- Need benefits that your insurance company is denying?
Insurance companies are businesses. And their business model (just like any other company) revolves around being able to keep more money than they pay out. Most people hope the insurance company will be fair. Unfortunately, our experience shows that the insurance company is likely to be more concerned with making a profit.
Our NC workers’ compensation attorneys have dedicated their lives to helping injured workers on an individual basis. If you’ve been injured at work, we want to hear your story to see if we can help you.