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What Workers’ Rights Do I Have Under Workers’ Comp in Louisiana?

Most jobs in Louisiana are covered by workers’ compensation in the event that you are hurt at work.

Employers are required by Louisiana law to carry workers’ comp insurance. Some jobs are not included, such as domestic employees, but those exceptions are few.

If you’re hired and paid to do a job in Louisiana, no matter if it’s full-time or part-time, chances are you’re covered.

That’s a great thing, because workers’ compensation benefits are a critical way for you to recover from a job injury, both physically and financially.

The tricky part is getting all of the benefits you are entitled to receive.

You’re not an expert on Louisiana workers’ comp law. Most workers don’t fully understand what support you can and should receive after a job injury.

That gives employers and workers’ comp insurance companies an opening to provide you less than the maximum benefits available—to save themselves money.

Louisiana workers’ comp attorneys, such as the team at Workers’ Compensation, LLC, can help you stand up for your workers’ rights

Read below for more on what rights you should understand if you suffer an injury on the job in Louisiana.

These Workers’ Rights Protect You if You’re Hurt at Work in Louisiana

The Louisiana Workforce Commission makes it clear that you have certain rights after an accident and injury at work. At the same time, your employer has certain responsibilities after your accident and injury.

Workers’ compensation is not about fault. It generally doesn’t matter what caused your accident—whether it was something your employer did, something a co-worker did, or even something you did.

Workers’ comp is supposed to provide health care and economic aid for injuries that happen at work for any reason, period.

These are your employee rights under workers’ comp:

  • Right to receive medical treatment for your injuries, covered by workers’ comp.
  • Right to choose your own physician for ongoing care for your injuries.
  • Right to indemnity payments (substitution for wages) once you have missed at least two weeks of work. (The pay equals two-thirds of your wages, up to a limit set by the state.)
  • Right to ask for an independent medical exam to resolve a dispute over your medical condition or ability to return to work. (Employers and insurance companies can also ask for this.)
  • Right to additional compensation if your injury is considered “catastrophic,” such as loss of limbs or paraplegia.
  • Right to appeal a denial of medical treatment.
  • Right to “vocational rehabilitation” services to help you return to the workforce if you have work restrictions. These vocational services are required prior to any reduction or suspension of your benefits.
  • Right to maintain your employment while filing for workers’ comp, subject to the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Your employer can’t legally fire you for filing a workers’ comp claim, though they don’t have to hold a job open for you indefinitely.
  • Right to “death benefits” for surviving family members of someone who was killed in a workplace accident.

It Can Be Hard to Protect Your Workers’ Rights. What Can You Do?

Most of these rights seem pretty straightforward.

But in the workers’ comp system, employers and insurance companies find ways to make things complicated.

For example, your employer could make it seem like you have to go to their doctor for treatment after a work injury. You always have a right to select your own doctor.

You have to remember and stand up for that right to see your own doctor. This is important because your own doctor is more likely to truly care for your needs than a company doctor.

Your indemnity benefits (substitute for lost wages) can also be delayed, or short-changed.

An employer can argue that you are an independent contractor and not an employee, so they can deny your benefits. But you shouldn’t just accept that answer.

And vocational rehabilitation can sometimes be a way to speed you off of benefits instead of truly helping you get back to work.

Louisiana workers’ comp lawyers know what pitfalls to avoid. They know what tactics employers and insurance companies use. They know the full amount you should be able to get from workers’ comp benefits.

They know how to protect your rights as a worker when your work is harshly interrupted by injury.

The workers’ comp attorneys at Workers’ Compensation, LLC, have helped thousands of hard-working people in Louisiana get benefits and secure better financial futures.

For help protecting your rights under workers’ comp, contact us today.

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