When you are injured at work, there are steps you must take to protect your rights, and get the medical care and legal assistance you need quickly. In Arizona, Workers’ Compensation is administered by the Industrial Commission of Arizona, which enables injured workers to get both the treatment and care they need and the wages they lose from being out of work. Most employers must carry workers’ compensation insurance or act as their own insurer to cover any expenses related to workplace injuries and accidents. But there are several key issues you need to know about to protect all of your rights.
Arizona workers’ compensation laws provide two types of claims for those injured on the job or at work: ‘medical only claims‘ and ‘time lost claims‘. Medical only claims seek benefits to cover the medical treatments you may need following a work-related injury. Medical only claims do not include lost wages for the time you have been out of work.
Time lost claims seek benefits for wages you have lost due to your work related injury or accident. Lost wages are paid beginning on the eighth day you are out of work. No benefits are paid for the first seven days of any disability unless you are out of work for fourteen days or longer. The days a worker is out of work are not required to be consecutive, so if you miss a few days each week for several weeks you could still be entitled to lost wages benefits. Let Injury Hotline help you get the assistance you need if you’ve been injured at work.
Under Arizona law, it is required that employers secure workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. Workers’ compensation is a ‘no fault’ system under which injured employees are entitled to benefits for an industrial injury regardless of who caused the work-related accident.
Many workers believe that the only option for someone injured at work is to file a worker’s compensation claim. This is often not the case, and there are many times when Arizona workers’ compensation benefits are not enough. For example, when a third party, such as an independent contractor, caused the injury, or a dangerous product was used at your workplace, you have other remedies available that may be greater than workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation benefits may help the you with medical bills and lost wages, but if your injury or accident was not caused by your employer, normal personal injury laws are applicable. Injury Hotline is Arizona’s leading workplace injury specialists, and we can help ensure that you get the assistance you need to get your maximum benefits.
If you have already seen a physician recommended by your employer but you are not satisfied with your care, you can request to switch doctors. If your work injury is recent and you have not yet seen a physician, you can assert your right to see the doctor of your choosing.
Your employer should advise you that you have the right to be examined and treated by your doctor of choice. Your employer can have you examined only once by a physician of its own choosing following your injury. If you continue to see that doctor again, he or she becomes your ‘treating physician’ and it becomes difficult to change physicians. Many injured workers believe that their treating physician must be the doctor recommended by their employer, but this is not true, and such physicians may be serving the best interests your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer instead of you. Injury Hotline is Arizona’s leading work injury specialist and we can help protect your rights as an injured worker.
Arizona’s workers’ compensation laws require that your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance to cover employees who are injured on the job or develop an occupational illness and are unable to work. Workers’ compensation benefits cover all “reasonable and necessary” medical treatment required to help you recover from your injury or accident.
It’s important to know that your doctor bills your workers’ comp insurance company directly, so you won’t have to pay out of pocket expenses for medical care, and physicians cannot send you a bill for these services.
Most workers are eligible for Arizona workers’ compensation insurance, and it generally does not matter how the you got hurt or if the injury was your fault. As long as the your work injury was caused by your work activities, you will be eligible for benefits. Let Injury Hotline help protect your rights as an injured worker in Arizona.
Your immigration status DOES NOT prohibit you from getting workers’ compensation benefits in Arizona. This is a widely misunderstood issue that causes many undocumented workers to often avoid filing claims for fear of being discovered as an undocumented immigrant. According to Arizona law, employees are “every person in the service of any employer … including aliens and minors legally or illegally permitted to work for hire.” So you cannot be denied your workers’ compensation claim just because of your immigration status.
Immigrant workers face unique challenges when they are injured at work. Your employer might tell you that because you’re an undocumented worker you can’t get workers’ compensation benefits. This is NOT TRUE! Your situation can also be complicated if you used a different name or social security number when applying for employment. Using a fake identity or social security number could be a violation of other areas of law but it is not a valid reason to deny workers’ compensation benefits.
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