Things To Know About Workers’ Compensation And Coronavirus Outbreak
The United States, and the rest of the world, has been rocked recently by COVID-19, a.k.a. the coronavirus pandemic. It has created a public health crisis that is unprecedented. Countless numbers of personnel from government agencies and companies have been furloughed or fired. Some have been sent home to work, if they were lucky. While working from home may help decrease the chance of infection for workers doing so from their home office, dining room table, bedroom, etc., there are those still at risk. Working in jobs that are considered critical public services are people being referred to as “essential employees”. Each and every day these people could potentially be exposed to the virus.
So, the question arises – how are workers’ compensation and coronavirus related? Many are asking, ” If I’m infected on the job, can I receive workers’ compensation?”
We’re going to attempt to answer that question and more. Please be advised, however, that legislation varies from state to state where workers’ compensation for coronavirus-infected individuals is concerned. Whether or not certain individuals fall under the “essential worker” categorization, what industries are considered essential businesses, proof of infection on the job, and more, all fall under state jurisdiction. For good, solid answers in your state, you should consult a reputable, experienced, and knowledgeable attorney. More about that later.
As Claims Emerge – Compensation Rulings Matter More
For guidance on how to handle coronavirus-related workers’ compensation claims, very few (if any) precedents have been set, so states don’t have a reference upon which to look. More and more, however, as workers’ compensation claims related to the coronavirus are filed, how they are handled will likely set a new precedent. Future cases will be handled depending on how early cases and claims are settled. Coronavirus claims can be better tailored to the needs of their clients as attorneys take into consideration the handling of each newly presented COVID-19-related workers’ compensation case.
Factors in Coronavirus-Related Workers’ Comp Claims
Depending on the state in which you live (local legislation), for the filing of a workers’ comp claim related to the current pandemic, the following factors may come into play:
- For reporting and filing workers’ compensation claims, all state rules must be followed.
- Though they may have other legal options, workers’ comp for the coronavirus cannot currently be obtained by independent contractors.
- In addition to a COVID-19 workers’ compensation claim, it may be possible to file a lawsuit.
- Someone does not have to be proven “at fault” to be awarded workers’ compensation.
- You may be required to provide that an illness (or injury) is job-related in order to obtain workers’ compensation benefits. (State-by-state legislative rulings as to whether or not proof must be offered that an infected employee actually contracted COVID-19 on-the-job are extremely fluid right now.)
If Or When the Worst Happens
Until now, we’ve been discussing what would happen if someone got sick because they contracted the coronavirus on-the-job. Unfortunately, in addition to becoming extremely ill, any number of individuals have lost their lives to COVID-19.
If someone dies from work-related coronavirus exposure, their family members should acquire an attorney and seek death benefits for the loss of their loved one.
Get Your Answers from Corradino & Papa, LLC
Even before the coronavirus, it could be confusing and frustrating, trying to file and collect on a workers’ compensation claim. All sorts of wrenches can get thrown into the works, from employers refusing the claim to extensive paperwork, and more. With the coronavirus presenting yet another complication, filing and following through with a workers’ compensation claim is best left to the professionals – now more than ever. Even with the latest pandemic, the attorneys and staff at Corradino & Papa, LLC are still here for you, fighting for your rights, 24/7.
Currently, we are consulting with our clients through telecommunication and videoconferencing. You have enough to worry about right now, with just staying home and getting healthy. While you concentrate on getting better, we’ll put your case together, answer your questions, discuss any and all progress with you, and fight to see that you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today!
Disclaimer: Results may vary depending on your particular facts and legal circumstances.