What Are The Benefits of Having Workers Compensation Insurance?

Workers compensation is a type of insurance that provides employees with payment for lost income and medical expenses due to some type of job-related illness or injury. It is a way of protecting company employees by guaranteeing that in the event of a work-related injury or sickness, they will receive compensation. How Employers Benefit From Having Workers Compensation Insurance Employers who pay into their state’s workers compensation insurance program are also provided with some vital coverage. By paying into the fund, employers are absolved of any liability for claims an employee might wish to file. In addition, employers are afforded specific legal protections that grant them immunity from lawsuits based on an employee’s injury. State Mandates States require employers to pay these benefits and employers must have proof that they have the financial resources to cover the cost of any potential claim. The usual way that employers prove this is by purchasing workers compensation insurance. Employers are legally obligated to participate in their state’s program, although there are some exceptions. Those few exceptions vary by state. Self-Employed Workers Compensation Insurance Self employed people don’t have to have workers compensation insurance, but in some places, there may be provisions that allow self employed workers to "opt in" as self employed business people. Having this coverage means that a person who is self-employed will be able to get insurance to cover the costs of treatment for illness or injury. Even if your state doesn’t require that you have workers compensation insurance, having it is a good idea, and it provides you with a guarantee of protection should something happen. Workers Compensation and Small Businesses Sometimes small business owners fail to see the benefit of workers compensation. They think of it as an overhead expense, and unless and employee is injured or gets sick because of the job, they never see the benefit. Types of Workers Compensation Insurance Benefits Workers Compensation provides coverage in four different ways.

  • Death benefits provide payment for some of the wages a family loses because of a job-related death.
  • Workers compensation insurance may provide burial benefits to help with some of the expenses related to the cost of a funeral.
  • Medical benefits are designed to cover the cost of medical care and treatment for a job-related illness or injury.
  • Income benefits are designed to pay employees a portion of wages they lose due to illness or injury.

Workers compensation insurance provides a wealth of essential benefits to both employees and their employers. Employees gain the assurance that they will not be totally without income in the event that they are injured on the job or suffer from some illness related to their job. For employers, they too are protected in this same way. Employers who pay into the state workers compensation insurance fund get legal protection that they wouldn’t otherwise have. That means they don’t ever have to worry about whether or not a lawsuit could eat up all of the company’s profits and wipe it out entirely.

What is the Average Time that a Claim is Processed or Settled?

If an accident or break-in leaves your car or home vulnerable to damages or loss, you will probably rely on your homeowners or auto insurance policies to repair the damages in an appropriate amount of time. However, depending on the extent of your losses and the size of your claim, processing and settling a claim can take days or even weeks.

How it Works

After an incident occurs, an insurance adjuster is assigned to review your case and determine how much compensation you are entitled to. Some insurance companies take several days to review your case and determine your eligibility for compensation. At this time, you may be asked to acquire repair or replacement estimates — especially if the claim is related to losses sustained in an auto accident. Your insurer will then either offer to cover the full cost of your repairs, minus the deductible, or you will be offered a settlement amount, which you can accept or deny.

Keep in mind that the average time for claims to process is usually much shorter when the only damage or losses are related to property. If you are filing a personal injury claim as well, your case may take longer to process, as insurers will require copies of medical bills and possibly, a statement from you physician. Also, if you deny an insurance settlement, your case may go into a mediation process through your insurer to determine whether you should receive a higher payment. If your case goes into mediation, it may take an additional two to six weeks to settle.

How You Can Accelerate the Process

Depending on the nature of your claim, you can accelerate how long claims are processed or settled through your insurer in a number of ways. Start by always getting a police report at the scene of the accident or crime — no matter how big or small it is. Provide the contact information of witnesses, and ask to schedule a time to meet with the adjuster to inspect damages. If your adjuster asks for pictures instead, ask to email them, rather than send them through the mail.