After Workers’ Comp Benefits, Am I Eligible for Disability, Unemployment, or Social Security Benefits?
Workers’ Compensation benefits are sometimes not enough to cover basic and medical expenses. Injured employees might wonder whether they can get disability, unemployment, or social security benefits on top of workers’ comp.
Yes, injured workers can get disability benefits after benefiting from a workers’ compensation case. A Stipulation and Award can provide you with ongoing benefits. You might also be entitled to a lump sum amount on top of getting Social Security Disability Insurance or long-term disability benefits.
Unemployment benefits, however, are usually out of reach in this situation.
Getting Disability Benefits after Workers’ Compensation
When a workers’ compensation case is settled with a Stipulation and Award, the injured party may continue to receive disability benefits.
A stipulation and Award refers to an agreement with your employers’ insurance company that provides benefits for ongoing medical care. These continuing disability benefits are intended to offset the costs of a workplace injury. How much you receive depends on the law in your particular state and the extent of your injuries.
It is important to note that Stipulation and Award settlements are not as common as Compromise and Release settlements. Under such a settlement, injured workers generally receive a lump sum payment instead of ongoing payments. This is more advantageous for insurance companies so they go after it aggressively.
A qualified attorney can take a meticulous look at the facts of your case and advise you about what can be done.
Getting Unemployment Benefits after Workers’ Compensation
If you are now getting or have gotten workers’ comp benefits to compensate for Temporary or Permanent Total disability, you will not be approved for unemployment benefits.
Workers’ compensation benefits are meant to cover medical expenses and most of your lost wages after a work-related injury or illness. Unemployment insurance, on the other hand, is intended to make up for a portion of lost wages after a job loss but where people are still able to work and actively looking to do so.
Since these two types of insurance are meant for different purposes, it is rare for workers to collect both at the same time. However, every case is different and a qualified lawyer will be able to expand more on this issue depending on the circumstances of your case.
Getting Social Security Benefits after Workers’ Compensation
If you are disabled as a result of an injury, you may be able to benefit from Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) even if your injury did not happen on the job. For this to happen, you have to have a qualifying disability and enough work history for Social Security. The Social Security Administration defines a qualifying disability this way:
- A person must have a physical or mental impairment that keeps them from performing their work duties.
- The impairment must prevent the person from being able to do any other work.
- The person’s condition must have persisted or be expected to persist over 1 year.
Very few individuals meet these requirements but having proper legal representation can go a long way to being approved. If you are approved for SSDI, the benefits you receive will be based on your average monthly income.
What to Do After Being Injured at Work
After being injured at work, you have to notify your employer about what has happened as soon as possible. However, getting medical assistance should always be more important. Once, a physician has taken care of you, make sure to get a hold of your employer immediately because waiting can compromise your chances of being approved for workers’ comp.
Once your employer knows about your accident, forms will have to be filled out to be sent to the insurance company.
Whether your claim is approved or not, your employer’s insurance company will not know or care to inform you whether you can also get other benefits such as SSDI. This should be determined by a qualified lawyer who will advise you about the matter and what to do next.
Proper Legal Assistance
There are grey areas when it comes to workers’ comp cases. You might be legally eligible to receive these and other benefits but the insurance company can still deny your claim. In such a case, it is imperative that you get proper legal assistance as soon as possible. This can be the determining factor in whether you ultimately get the benefits you deserve or not.
Going after benefits you know are yours on your own is not the best course of action. Some of the benefits of hiring a workers’ comp attorney to represent you include:
Keep your Claim Going after Denial
After a work-related accident or illness, the last thing you want to do is go against the complicated workers’ compensation system by yourself. Unfortunately, many people do just that and end up losing. It’s always advisable to get proper legal assistance from an attorney who understands the system and what evidence is needed to get the insurance company to settle the claim in your favor.
Negotiating with the Insurance Company Properly
Insurance companies tend to have highly-paid lawyers on their side. Most individuals with little or no legal background will not be able to negotiate with them properly. This can result in a settlement with much fewer benefits than you deserve or even none at all. A workers’ compensation attorney will know how to negotiate with the insurance company properly.
Get all the Benefits You Deserve
Aside from the fact that the insurance company will try to pay you as little as possible or nothing at all, you might be entitled to more benefits than just workers’ comp. An experienced attorney will have a good look at the facts of your case and know how to identify whether this is the case or not.
The Final Word
You might be able to get benefits other than workers’ comp after being hurt or an illness. However, this depends on various factors that include the laws in your State and the particulars of your case.
The smartest thing to do is to talk to a lawyer about your case so that you get the right counsel and advice. Doing this as soon as possible is important to get all the benefits that the law says are yours.
Call the Law Office of Robert E Frawley at (617) 523-2929 and we’ll help you get the compensation you and your family deserve.