Workers’ Compensation Claims in North Carolina
North Carolina has a specific law governing workers’ compensation claims called The North Carolina Worker’s Compensation Act. This law is subject to change by the North Carolina Legislature, so it is important to be aware of the latest changes which might affect a claim. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor in Charlotte, Hickory, and Greenville have years of experience with North Carolina workers’ compensation law and keep of track the latest developments in the law to help you get the best result possible for your claim.
That said, there are a few basic guidelines anyone with a potential workers’ compensation claim in North Carolina should know.
As an initial matter, not all injuries at work are covered by the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act, and there are certain basic requirements the injured workers should know.
What Employers are Required to Have Workers Compensation Coverage?
In North Carolina, an employer which regularly employees three (3) or more employees are required to have workers compensation insurance to cover their employees. However, the law exempts certain employers from having to carry workers’ compensation insurance, such as certain agricultural operations, and “casual employment”.
Our experienced attorneys can review the facts of a case to determine if an employer has to carry workers’ compensation coverage for its employees, and therefore a claim can be filed.
Which Employees are Covered by Workers’ Compensation Law in North Carolina?
If an employer is required to carry workers’ compensation insurance coverage for its employees, normally all employees are covered, including employees of temporary staffing agencies and part-time employees. There are certain situations in which an employee may not be covered, such as when employee is a domestic servant, not working for a company, or seasonal farm workers. Also, Federal Employees are covered by a Federal workers’ compensation law, and do not have a claim under North Carolina Workers’ Compensation law.
If you are uncertain as to whether you are eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim, you should consult an experienced attorney to review your situation.
What Types of Injuries Does Workers’ Compensation Cover?
The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act on covers certain types of injuries, and simply being hurt at work does not mean you have a valid claim. Employees who suffer from an certain occupational diseases, such as from chemical exposure. Most claims stem from employees who suffer an injury resulting from an accident at work. Common accidents resulting in workers’ compensation claims include:
- Falls from ladders or tall heights
- Slip and fall injuries
- Injuries due to machine malfunctions
- Being struck by an object
Injuries to the back or neck are treated a bit differently under North Carolina law. To have a claim, employees must simply show that the injury resulted from a specific traumatic incident, such as lifting something very heavy.
Timeline to File a Workers Compensation Claim in North Carolina
If you are hurt at work, you should notify your employer as soon as possible, and comply with whatever reporting requirements they have, such as completing a written report. Not telling an employer about an injury could also jeopardize your claim.
If you feel you have a workers’ compensation claim, you should file the claim promptly. There is a form, called a Form 18, which you should file with the North Carolina Industrial Commission, the government agency that oversees workers’ compensation claim. Even if you notified your employer promptly, or your accident was witnessed by your supervisor, you should still file a claim. An employer is supposed to provide employee with the Form 18, but never assume your employer or the insurance company will do so. In fact, many employers do not know how to address workers’ compensation claims, and an injured worker should always make sure their claim is being processed.
In North Carolina, you are given 30 days to file a claim for your injury, and it is possible your claim may be denied for failure to do so. If you are in Charlotte, Hickory or Greenville North Carolina, the attorneys at The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor can help you with properly filing a North Carolina workers’ compensation claim, and making sure your claim gets the attention it deserves from the workers’ compensation insurance company. Representatives at our firm are on call 24/7 to assist you. We will help you set up a free, no-obligation quote. Let us supply you with the guidance and expert representation you need.