Five Questions about Workers' Compensation and COVID-19

Five Questions about Workers' Compensation and COVID-19

With the rise in coronavirus cases, many businesses are either shutting their doors or asking employees to work from home.  Many businesses may also be deep cleaning on a routine basis and asking employees to follow safety guidelines when they are at work.  Concerns about insurance coverage, sick leave, and workers' compensation benefits are rising as the times change and the uncertainty over our economy builds.  As an attorney that specializes in workers' compensation in Orlando, we offer some advice for those who continue to work during this time.  There are few common questions that many people have about workers' compensation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If I contract COVID-19 at work, is that covered by workers' compensation?

This is a tricky question, because it depends on the fine print in your state's workers' compensation laws.  Many provide compensation for diseases that arise in the course of your employment but do not cover ordinary diseases, such as the common cold and flu.  Essential workers, however, may be in the occupational group that provides wider exposure, which puts them more at risk.   You'll want to discuss this with your employer to understand their complete coverage.

Will I still receive my benefits payments during the pandemic?

If you case was settled prior to the beginning of the pandemic, you will still receive the paychecks in the agreed upon amount.  If you still cannot work because of a previous work-injury, you will still be eligible to receive these checks despite the changes in your business over these past few months.

Will the federal stimulus checks lower my benefits payments?

No.  The money issued by the federal government in the form of stimulus checks will not be used to determine or change anything regarding any filed claims or current payments you may already be receiving.  These checks were issued from the government, and your business will not take these into account for any reason.

If my treatment was put on hold, will this affect my workers' compensation claim?

If you still require treatment, you will still be eligible for benefits despite the fact that your treatment plan has been stopped.  After the restrictions on the pandemic are fully lifted, you'll be able to resume treatments and get the information you need to fight for the right settlement for your claim.

What happens if I cancel my health appointments due to COVID-19 risk factors?

You should do everything you possibly can to attend your appointments to assess your injury.  If you are afraid to go to hospitals or medical facilities, contact your doctor and arrange for a telehealth visit.  In extreme cases where you cannot make your appointment, you want to relay this information to your claims manager and keep them updated with any news on your injury and claim.

These are a few questions that have been brought up concerning workers' compensation during COVID-19.  Because we specialize in workers' compensation in Orlando, we work closely with many of our clients to determine claims from injuries at work.  We will use our expertise and knowledge to defend you through your battle as well.  Contact us to schedule a consultation today.

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