When you get up in the morning to head for work, the last thing you expect is to end up in a hospital bed that night, injured — but it does happen. While some industries are more dangerous than others, everyone who works has the potential to suffer an on-the-job injury.
That makes it smart to understand the basics about California’s workers’ compensation system. Here are the types of benefits you can expect to receive after a work-related injury:
- Medical coverage. You won’t have to foot the bill for copayments when you go to the hospital, see a doctor, participate in therapy or buy medications related to your work injury. That’s on your employer.
- Temporary disability benefits. These are cash payments that can partially replace or supplement your wages if you can’t return to work right away or have to work a lesser-paying job for a while.
- Permanent disability benefits. These cash payments offer partial wage replacement when your injuries make it impossible for you to ever fully resume your work.
- Supplemental job displacement vouchers. These can help you obtain new training or skills so that you can eventually find a new career when you can’t return to your old one because of your injuries
Workers’ compensation also has death benefits that are available to the spouses, minor children and other dependents of a worker who is killed on the job or later dies from injuries received at work.
If you’ve been injured at work, assert your rights. If your employer balks at paying what you are due, it may be time to get some legal assistance.