All employers in Massachusetts are required to carry worker’s compensation insurance. This provides valuable coverage for work-related injuries that may prevent an employee from continuing to perform his/her work-related duties. Before settling a claim, here are a few things you should know about worker’s compensation lawsuits and settlements.
What Is Covered by Worker’s Compensation Insurance
In its simplest form, worker’s compensation insurance covers medical expenses and lost wages. For serious injuries, it benefits can extend further. For instance, if injuries prevent you from continuing to work in the same position, it can cover the cost for training to gain a new skill set. If permanent injuries result from an accident, additional compensation may be offered. In cases where injuries result in death, family members may receive death benefits.
Claims, Settlements, and Warnings
There are technically three parties in any workplace injury case: the employee, the employer, and the insurance company. Employees often find themselves with 3 options in pursuing worker’s compensation lawsuits and settlements:
1 – Off-record Settlements
Off-record settlements take place directly between employer and employer. Employers may offer this in order to avoid insurance claims and higher insurance premiums in the future. These can be dangerous as employees forfeit the protections provided by worker’s compensation insurance and state laws related to that.
2 – Worker’s Compensation Claim
Filing a worker’s compensation insurance claim entitles you to certain benefits under the policy and protects your employment as well. However, in doing so, you are prohibited from filing a personal injury lawsuit against the employer.
3 – Personal Injury Lawsuit
To pursue a personal injury lawsuit against your employer, you must not participate in one of the two previous options. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your accident, this third option could be in your best interests. Consult with a personal injury attorney for information and guidance on a possible lawsuit.
More on Worker’s Compensation Lawsuits and Settlements
It can be confusing selecting the right path towards receiving compensation for your work-related injuries. Decisions are required at a time when you’re struggling to recover and worried about accumulating medical bills. The quickest and easiest path may not be the best for you long-term. Before making any decisions or signing any documents regarding claims or settlements, be sure to speak to an attorney. Knowing your rights and options are the key to protecting your best interests. Contact our team of Massachusetts personal injury attorneys to discuss your work-related injury case.