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How Much Work Can You Miss With a WC Claim?



Qualifying for workers' compensation insurance often means you’ll have enough money to survive if you’re injured on the job and unable to work, as well as having your medical expenses covered. Most employees are covered by workers' compensation. The length of time an injured worker can receive benefits after filing a successful claim varies with the laws of each state.

How Much Work Can You Miss After Sufferring an Injury?

How much work you can miss after suffering an injury on the job or contracting a disease due to working conditions depends on a variety of issues in each particular case. Some injuries lead to a short time away from work, while more severe injuries can result in permanent disability.

The extent of your claim and the total amount of compensation are determined through a process that involves seeing a medical examiner and having your case decided by the state workers' compensation board. State laws govern private and state government compensation programs, and the Federal Employee Compensation Act (FECA) covers federal workers—which can also include independent contractors.

On occasion, it can take some time before workers comp payments start. Alternatives to workers' comp after accidents in the workplace that can provide money in the interiminclude Social Security disability benefits and unemployment insurance.

Types of Covered Injuries

Typical employee injuries include sudden back strain, sprains, trauma-related injuries, and work-related medical conditions that have developed over time. Mental conditions, such as emotional stress, are also covered.

Each injured worker’s case is unique, and how much work you can miss will depend on the severity of the injury and the required course of medical treatment. The employee cannot return to work until cleared to do so by his physician.

If you are injured, the benefits of workers' compensation may pay for:

  • Permanent partial disability
  • Total disability
  • Temporary disability for the period you are not able to work

When You Need Help

If you need assistance in successfully obtaining unemployment benefits, resources include your state workers' compensation office, your union, and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Consulting a workers' compensation attorney to help you secure your benefits will provide you with an expert to answer your questions, represent you at the workers' compensation board hearing and, if your claim is denied, pursue an appeal on your behalf.