May 122014

New Jersey’s Workers’ Compensation Act allows individuals who are injured while at work to receive benefits for their work-related injuries. Regardless of who is at fault, injured workers/employees are eligible to receive benefits. However, injured workers are not allowed to sue the employers in a tort action or a civil lawsuit even if the accident was caused by the employers’ negligence.

Part 1 of this article discussed NJ’s Workers’ Compensation Act in general, and part 2 of the article will discuss the types of benefits injured workers are eligible to receive.

The benefits injured workers are entitled to receive after getting injured at work include:

  • medical benefits,
  • temporary total benefits,
  • permanent partial benefits, and
  • permanent total benefits.

Medical Benefits

An injured worker can receive medical benefits after getting injured at work. The medical benefits are paid by the employer’s workers’ comp carrier. However, only medical benefits that are necessary and reasonable will be paid, such as:

  • medical treatment,
  • prescriptions,
  • surgeries,
  • rehabilitation treatments, and
  • hospital services.

In addition, the injured employee must go to the doctors and medical providers designated by the employer’s workers’ comp insurance carrier.

Temporary Total Benefits

If a worker or employee is injured at work, he may not be able to work temporarily for a period of time due to the injuries. In that situation, the worker is temporarily disabled and is eligible to receive temporary total benefits or wage loss benefits.

If the worker cannot work for more than 7 days, he will receive 70% of the his average weekly wage, not to exceed the statutory maximum rate or fall below the statutory minimum rate provided by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development.

These benefits are provided until the worker is able to return to work, or has reached maximum medical recovery or has reached the statutory 400-week maximum.

The employer’s physicians will determine whether the employee has reached maximum medical recovery. The injured worker may also be sent to an independent medical evaluation designated by the workers’ comp carrier to determine whether he has reached maximum medical recovery.

Based on the medical reports, the workers’ comp carrier may stop temporary total benefits. If the injured worker feels that he has not reached maximum medical recovery, it is important to have a New Jersey workers’ comp lawyer review the case and help fight the workers’ comp carrier’s decision.

If you were injured at work, it is important to talk to a NJ workers’ compensation lawyer to help you obtain the maximum amount of benefits you are entitled to under NJ’s Workers’ Compensation Act. Some injured workers should receive more benefits than the workers’ comp carrier is paying them.

Call today to schedule a FREE consultation with Philip T. Ciprietti. 800-281-8695