On average, there are more than 20,000 workplace injuries per day. This adds up to approximately 8 million injuries per year, losing an average of 7.2 work days per case. Though not every injury is fatal or long-lasting, anything that could risk hindering a work schedule can be a serious threat. Without a regular paycheck, employees and their families are sure to suffer from something that can be beyond their control.
To protect the rights of workers, Louisiana workers compensation allows some form of insurance in the event of an injury. This coverage extends to most employees throughout the state usually at the start of employment. However, to properly insure employees in need of care, the Louisiana Workers Commission puts forth a list of guidelines dictating the qualifications for benefits.
Regarding Louisiana workers compensation, an employee can only be entitled to benefits in the following situations.
1. Following An “Accident”
An accident defined by the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act is “unexpected or unforeseen,” “occurring suddenly or violently,” “with or without human fault,” and caused by something more than “simple age-related degeneration.”
2. Following An “Occupational Disease”
An occupational disease must be “due to causes and conditions characteristic of and peculiar to the particular trade, occupation, process, or employment in which the employee is exposed to such disease.”
3. Following “Mental Injuries”
Louisiana workers compensation covers mental injuries suffered over the course of employment. However, mental injuries can only be cited if they arise from “physical injury or by a sudden extreme stress brought on by the employment.”
4. During Employment
Injuries must happen within the scope and course of an employee’s employment because of the occupation. Though neither an employee nor employer needs to be at fault for an employee to receive compensation following an accident, an employee cannot receive benefits following his or her own “horseplay,” intoxication, or willful intention to harm or disrupt others.
5. Following More Than Seven Days Of Sustainable Injury
If an employee is prevented from returning to work after one week, he or she is then entitled to Temporary Total Disability benefits. After two weeks of sustainable injury or death, an employee or any surviving dependents are entitled to Permanent Total Disability. These insurance benefits equal approximately sixty-six percent of an employee’s regular weekly wage.
Additional forms of Louisiana workers compensation also include all necessary medical expenses following an injury as well as vocational rehabilitation services if an employee cannot return to full working capacity. Other benefits such as the right to one’s previous job are not definitively covered by the commission and vary between places of employment.
Though workplace injuries can be common among certain occupations, there can be some disputes over how much a worker may receive. If you believe that you or a loved one have been unfairly compensated following a workplace injury, contact a workers comp lawyer to properly review your case.