Most frequent questions and answers
Just about every employee in South Carolina is eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, with a few exceptions. Employees who may not be eligible for the benefits include Federal employees, railroad company employees, agricultural employees, and people working at businesses with less than four employees.
Workers’ compensation provides benefits for short and long-term disability, medical expenses, and death benefits. Compensation may be provided for:
• Lost wages while you are temporarily disabled
• Necessary medical treatment
• Permanent disability or disfigurement
• Examples of workplace injuries include slip and fall accidents and burn injuries.
For missed work, you will be compensated at a rate of about 66 percent of your normal weekly wage. You will also be compensated if you are totally disabled or if you have lost a loved one to a workplace accident.
Typically you cannot, unless there was some intentional action on the part of your employer. Workers’ compensation laws are designed to prevent this type of lawsuit. Your employer pays for the benefits and is relieved from liability in return. Benefits are provided regardless of who is at fault in the accident.
In some cases, lawsuits are brought against third parties responsible for workplace injuries. For example, an injured construction worker may sue the manufacturer of dangerous and defective machinery.
You are not required to hire an attorney to file a workers’ compensation claim, but it may be in your best interest to do so. The process involves paperwork, deadlines and proper communication between the insurance company and your doctor. An attorney can ensure all of these steps are completed correctly and that you receive a fair amount of compensation in a timely manner.