As a construction worker in Somerville, you know that you have a dangerous job. It barely seems like an entire week goes by without you hearing about a crane accident, trench collapse or some other construction site calamity. You might even know a few co-workers who have filed workers' compensation claims and received benefits. But, if you suffer a workplace injury, do you know enough about the process to ensure you receive the help you need?
Before you end up with a work-related injury, take the time to find out as much as you can about your eligibility for workers' compensation benefits. Here is an overview of New Jersey's workers' compensation laws.
Workers' compensation coverage
In New Jersey, workers' compensation applies to most employees, however, there are a few exceptions. For example, domestic workers generally do not quality for workers' compensation benefits. If you become injured at work, or otherwise within the scope of your employment, you might be eligible to receive benefits. Also, if you become ill from exposure to dangerous materials or toxins while on the job, you might also be able to successfully file a claim.
If your employer and the insurer approve your claim, you might receive compensation for medical treatment expenses and lost wages. In addition, the insurer might provide vocational rehabilitation in case you need training for a new work position if your injury will not allow you to return to your previous job.
Dealing with a denial
Insurers deny workers' compensation claims all the time and for various reasons. Workers might receive a denial due to not reporting the injury within the time limits or not filing the claim correctly. Sometimes a denial is the result of an administrative error. No matter the reason for the denial, you can take steps to appeal it.
If you have suffered a workplace injury while on a construction site, you might be able to file a workers' compensation claim. Keep in mind that you must follow the process and make your claim within the state-prescribed time constraints.