When it comes to workers’ comp settlements cases, there are three parties that have the potential to be held liable for payments: the worker, the employer, and the insurance company. In most situations, the employer is the party that is ultimately liable for making these payments. Nevertheless, there are situations in which either the insurance company or the worker might be held liable for damages. Let’s take a more in-depth look at each of these parties and the potential liability that each of them may have in workers’ compensation claims.
What is Workers’ Comp?
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that provides benefits to workers who sustain injuries while on the job in the United States. The program is managed by the respective state governments, and each state possesses its own set of workers’ compensation laws. Although workers’ compensation is a beneficial resource for employees who have been injured on the job, the system does have a few drawbacks.
For instance, the benefits provided by workers’ compensation are frequently insufficient to cover the total cost of an injury, and employees may be required to miss work while they recover from their injuries. Accidents that take place outside of work, such as those involving cars, are not covered by workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation is an essential safety net for employees, even though it has these drawbacks. Injuries can result in significant financial losses as well as time away from work, but workers’ compensation can help make up for some of these losses.
Who is Liable for The Payments in Workers’ Comp Settlement Cases?
A worker who sustains an injury on the job may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits can help pay for medical expenses and lost wages.
However, whose responsibility is it to pay these settlement payments? The response might surprise you. In most cases, the workers’ comp insurer is responsible for settlement payments. There are, however, exceptions to this rule. They may be liable if the injury was caused by the employer’s negligence. In some instances, a worker who has been injured may be able to sue for pain and suffering.
If you have been injured on the job, it is imperative that you consult with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to determine your legal rights.
What If the Employer is Uninsured?
There are approximately 26 million Americans who work for uninsured employers. If they are injured on the job, their medical expenses and lost wages will not be covered by workers’ compensation insurance.
If your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, you may still be eligible for benefits if you are injured on the job. In most states, it is illegal for an employer to lack workers’ compensation insurance.
If your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance and you are injured on the job, you may be eligible for benefits from:
- A lawsuit against your employer – The state’s workers’ comp program.
- Workers’ compensation insurance held by your employer in a different state.
- Your medical coverage.
If your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, you should always consult an attorney to determine your legal rights.
How Can Workers’ Compensation Settlements Be Paid?
The workers’ compensation insurance company will typically be the one to decide how these settlements will be paid out, though there are several different ways in which they could be paid out.
A one-time payment, also known as a lump sum payment, is one of the options for how workers’ comp settlements can be paid out. In this stage of the process, the insurance company will pay the employee a one-time sum that is equivalent to the total value of the settlement. Periodic payments are yet another method that can be utilized to satisfy the obligations resulting from these settlements. This is the stage in which the worker will receive periodic payments from the insurance company over the course of some time, which will typically last for a few years.
The method of payment for a workers’ compensation settlement will either be decided upon by the insurance company or by the plaintiff.
In cases involving workers’ comp, there are several different liable parties. Typically, the employer is responsible for medical expenses and a portion of lost wages. In some instances, the employee may be required to pay a portion of the medical expenses. Contact San Gabriel Valley Workers’ Compensation Attorneys at (626) 602-9483 to learn more about your legal rights and options.