What is Workers Compensation?
Workers compensation is a type of insurance that provides lost wages to individuals who have sustained injuries at their job. When an employee receives workers compensation it is in exchange for the ability for that employee to sue his or her employer for the tort of negligence. The specific benefits offered to an employer who is receiving workers comp vary state by state. In Kansas, workers are entitled to coverage for medical expenses relating to their injury, as well as a portion of wages lost due to an inability to work. This is not from negligent acts, it is only necessary to prove you are an employee and were working within the course and scope of employment when you were injured. It is very important to make sure that you are not taking illegal drugs or smoking pot since you will likely be drug tested and in Kansas, that is a defense to the case.
What Do I Do When I am Injured at Work?
When you sustain an injury at your place of employment, the first thing you should do is to notify your employer about the incident. After your employer is aware of the situation, you should contact an attorney with experience handling workers compensation claims. You can also refer to the Workers Compensation Rights and Responsibilities section of the Kansas Department of Labor guidebook (K-WC 40-A).
What is the Weekly Benefit Pay for Workers in Kansas Who are Out of Work Due to a Workplace Injury?
Generally speaking, while you are out of work you are entitled to 2/3 of your average weekly wage, up to a maximum of 75% of the state's average weekly wage. The cap usually changes yearly.
What Type of Medical Treatment Am I Entitled To?
Under workers compensation laws you are entitled to any medical treatment deemed necessary as a result of your injury. You will not be responsible for any deductibles or co-payments, and there is no maximum limit for the amount of medical expenses that can accrue, as long as they are all believed to be necessary in order for you to recover from your injury. The problem is that the employers use work comp defense doctors who are known to be unfair and biased towards the insurance carrier against the injured employee. If you get injured, getting treated by a good nonbiased doctor is the big issue. The present system is at best, corrupt, based upon the use of bad doctors who are not compassionate and who are hired to help only your employer and the insurance industry.
How Do I Know if I Have Been Offered a Fair Settlement By My Employer?
Many times, employers will offer settlements to an employer who is injured at work. If you accept the settlement, you will no longer receive your weekly wages and you will be fully responsible for all medical expenses that accrue after the settlement. Sometimes the settlements are fair, but other times the employer is trying to take advantage of the worker in an attempt to save money in the long run. It is always best to consult with an attorney before accepting a settlement. Even though settlements must be approved by the State Workers' Compensation Agency, it doesn't mean that every settlement is in the best interest of the employee.
If you have been injured at work, it is always a good idea to seek counsel from an experienced attorney with knowledge pertaining to workers compensation in the state of Kansas. Only an experienced lawyer will be able to help you navigate the intricacies of workers compensation laws and statutes. Brad Pistotnik Law has decades of experience representing people just like you. If you live in the Wichita or the Dodge City area, as well as the neighboring towns of Garden City, Liberal and Hutchinson, and have been injured at work, contact Brad Pistotnik today. You can reach the firm anytime of day, seven days a week, by calling 1-800-241-BRAD or 316-684-4400. Or, contact Brad directly by calling his cell phone at 316-706-5020. You can call Tony Atterbury on his cell phone at 316-617-9237. Don't wait! Call now!
Remember that in Kansas you have to give adequate notice of your work comp injury to your employer within no longer than 10 days of the injury so always do it the very first day.