NJ Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Protect Injured Employees

Knowledgeable representation for workman’s comp disputes and appeals

Workers’ compensation is a no-fault insurance system that covers workers for injuries and illnesses that arise out of their employment. New Jersey law requires most employers to carry this insurance, and if they do, employees must pursue damages through this remedy. Unfortunately, the fact that injured workers have a right to benefits doesn’t mean that insurance companies are eager to pay. Disputes often arise, leading insurers to deny claims or to limit benefits. At Seigel Law in Ridgewood, New Jersey, our attorneys have more than 45 years of experience helping injured workers access the compensation they need and deserve.

Benefits available under New Jersey workers’ compensation law

Workers’ compensation reimburses eligible workers for the following:

  • Medical expenses — Workers are entitled to coverage for reasonable and necessary treatment arising from a work-related injury or illness. The employer’s insurer might designate authorized physicians, but the worker has the right to challenge the physician’s treatment plan and medical conclusions and to consult with another doctor.
  • Temporary total disability — An employee who misses work for more than seven days due to work-related injury or illness is eligible to receive 70 percent of their average weekly wage, up to 75 percent of the Statewide Average Weekly Wage. These benefits usually terminate when the worker returns to work in some capacity or reaches maximum medical improvement (MMI).
  • Permanent partial disability — Workers who reach MMI but do not fully recover can receive permanent partial disability benefits based on the nature of the loss. These benefits begin after the date temporary disability coverage ends.
  • Permanent total disability — Injured workers who cannot return to gainful employment can receive permanent total disability payments for an initial period of 450 weeks. Payments may continue if the injured worker remains disabled. Benefits are based on 70 percent of the average weekly wage.
  • Death benefits — Dependents of fatally injured workers can receive weekly benefits equal to 70 percent of the average wage. Employer must also pay up to $3,500 in funeral expenses.

Workers who are denied benefits have the right to appeal and can have legal counsel to represent them.

Special considerations for construction industry workers

Workers’ compensation is available to employees in all occupations, from the data input clerk who develops carpal tunnel syndrome to the stevedore with degenerative disc disease. However, some occupations are inherently more dangerous, such as construction. For years, the Occupational Safety and Health Organization has tried to raise awareness about these top causes of accidental death on a construction site, known as the Fatal Four:

  • Falls — 33 percent of all worksite deaths
  • Struck-by-object — 11 percent
  • Electrocutions — 8 to 9 percent
  • Caught-in and/or caught-between — 5 to 6 percent

Workers’ compensation is a limited in its coverage. It does not provide full wage replacement, nor does it compensate for pain and suffering. Those damages are available only through a personal injury lawsuit. Workers’ compensation law generally bars injured workers from suing their employers or co-workers for negligence. However, construction workers sometimes may be able to file a third-party suit.

Construction sites often are populated by workers employed by different subcontractors assigned to different tasks, such as carpentry, masonry, electric, plumbing or roofing. When a worker for one subcontractor causes injury to a worker for another subcontractor, the injured worker is permitted to sue. Our attorneys investigate construction accidents and help injured workers exercise the full extent of their rights.

Contact an experienced Ridgewood lawyer about your workers’ compensation benefits

Seigel Law in Ridgewood, New Jersey assists injured workers in obtaining the workers’ compensation benefits they deserve. To schedule a free consultation, call {PHONE) or contact us online