Charlotte is the most populous city in North Carolina. With over 800,000 Charlotteans bustling around the city, it’s no surprise that there is no shortage of work-related injuries. If you are injured on the job in Charlotte, you might wonder how long you can receive workers’ compensation benefits. The amount and duration of workers’ compensation benefits in North Carolina can vary, and If you are an injured worker, it is important to contact a skilled and experienced worker’s compensation attorney to assist you. The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor can help you file a workers’ compensation claim, understand your rights and options, and fight for the full benefits to which you are entitled under the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act.
What is Workers’ Compensation in North Carolina
Workers’ compensation is a system of insurance that provides benefits to employees who are injured or become ill due to their job. Workers’ compensation covers medical expenses, income replacement, and death benefits.
Under North Carolina’s workers’ compensation law, most employers must have workers’ compensation insurance. This means that if you are injured on the job, you are very likely eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits from your employer’s insurance policy. If you are not sure if your employer or employment is covered by workers’ compensation, you should ask if they do provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Charlotte, North Carolina
When you suffer a compensable injury at work, you are entitled to have your medical expenses paid for by workers’ compensation, including hospitalization, doctor’s visits, prescriptions, physical therapy, and other necessary treatment. In North Carolina, the employer and/or insurance carrier directs care, so if you get treatment from an “unauthorized” provider, the bill may not be paid and you will need to ask the North Carolina Industrial Commission to order the defendants to pay.
Medical treatment under the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act is potentially available for life, though in most cases treatment stops when you reach Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI). MMI is the point at which your doctor feels you have reached maximum healing. Some injured workers continue to receive medical treatment after reaching MMI, but to make certain you receive such treatment, it is a good idea to get an order from the North Carolina Industrial Commission stating you are entitled to additional treatment. Normally, if two years pass from the last payment for medical treatment, the claim is closed and you cannot get more treatment through workers’ compensation. An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can help you determine what medical benefits you are entitled to receive.
If you cannot work because of your injuries, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation disability benefits. These benefits can provide you with a portion of your lost wages while out of work.
Temporary Total Disability Benefits (TTD)
If your doctor determines that you are completely unable to work because of your injuries, you may be eligible for TTD benefits. These benefits are typically two-thirds of your average weekly wage, up to a maximum amount that is set for each year.
Temporary Partial Disability Benefits (TPD)
TPD benefits are paid when you return to work but at reduced wages. These benefits are normally 66 & ⅔ of the difference between the average weekly wage you earned prior to your injury and your current average weekly wage.
Under the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act, an injured worker can receive no more than 500 weeks of TTD or TPD benefits starting from the date they are first disabled as a result of their work injury, although there are a few exceptions to this cap on disability benefits.
Permanent Partial Disability Benefits (PPD)
If you suffer a permanent disability due to your workplace injury, you may be eligible to receive payment for a Permanent Partial Disability rating. The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act provides a guide for doctors to assign a percentage rating to the body part you injured. You are entitled to compensation for the rating, and can also get a second opinion on the rating.
Contact a Charlotte Workers’ Comp Lawyer Today
If you have been injured on the job, it is important to seek legal counsel as soon as possible to ensure that you are taking all the necessary steps to protect your rights and obtain the benefits you deserve.
The workers’ compensation process is complex and can seem daunting. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you navigate the complex workers’ compensation system. Call The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor today for a free consultation with an experienced Charlotte workers’ compensation attorney. We fight to protect the rights of injured workers and will work to get you the benefits you deserve for as long as you are entitled.