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Workers’ Compensation Benefits

The State of Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Program is centrally administered through the Department of Administrative Services (DAS), under the authority of C.G.S. 31-284a.

The program is designed to protect workers who suffer work-related injuries or illnesses. They are eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits for things like medical expenses and lost wages. Workers are not required to prove their employer was at fault for their injuries. If they are hurt at work, they simply receive the benefits.

However, the downside of the program is that workers’ compensation benefits become their only remedy. If they use the Workers Comp program, they are not allowed to sue their employer for the injuries, even if the employer was indeed at fault.

In some cases, this means they cannot collect money for damages like pain and suffering damages which could potentially add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. In this way, workers’ compensation insurance protects employers as well as employees. Nonetheless, this seemingly simple arrangement can be more complicated than it appears to be.

If you have been injured on the job in Connecticut, your best bet is to let a workers’ compensation attorney at Brown Paindiris & Scott, LLP help you understand your options, including your workers’ compensation claim. We have over 100 combined years of experience helping people just like you.

About Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Benefits

In Connecticut, workers’ compensation benefits are laid out clearly:

Medical Treatment

The most important concern when an employee is hurt at work is the employee’s health and physical well-being. While the employer is responsible for designating a medical facility or the initial treatment of an injury/illness, the employee is allowed to choose the “attending physician.” If the employer has an approved Medical Care Plan, then the employee’s choice is limited to the doctors in that plan. The employer is required by law to pay for all reasonable and necessary medical expenses.

Temporary Total Disability

Employees may be eligible for a wage replacement benefit if they are disabled from a
work-related injury or illness. The benefit rate is 75% of the post-tax/social security average weekly wage, based upon the injured worker’s wages before the injury, up to 52 weeks.

Temporary Partial Disability

When an employee can perform some type of work, but not the same kind of work or the same number of hours they worked at the time of the injury, he or she may receive this benefit. It would be 75% of the post-tax/social security difference between the amount they are currently earning and the amount they would have been making if they had not been injured.

Permanent Partial Disability

These benefits are paid to the worker who has suffered a permanent, partial loss of use of a body part(s) due to their work-related injury. The exact amount is based upon the specific body part which was injured, the attending physician’s determination of the percentage of that body part disabled, and the employee’s basic compensation rate.

Relapse or Recurrence

When employees suffer a relapse or recurrence of the original injury or illness, they may be entitled to receive benefits for the period of relapse. This compensation would be the employee’s basic compensation rate at the time of the original injury/illness, plus cost-of-living allowances, or their new rate based on their salary at the time of the recurrence, whichever is higher.

Discretionary Benefits

A Workers’ Compensation Commissioner “may” grant these additional benefits to an employee after he/she has been paid all of their Permanent Partial Disability. The employee must request an informal hearing at which the commissioner may or may not grant these benefits, depending upon the case’s specific circumstances.

Job Retraining

The Workers’ Compensation Act also provides for vocational rehabilitation for those who are injured or become ill due to their work and cannot return to the type of work that caused the injury or illness. These employees may be eligible for some kind of job retraining from the Workers’ Compensation Commission’s Rehabilitation Services.

Contact BPS Lawyers for More Information About Workers’ Compensation

The workers’ compensation process is complicated and time-consuming. Further complicating your claim is the possibility that your employer and/or the insurance company may try to convince you to sign off on your claim and settle quickly for an amount that is less than you deserve. They will likely sound reasonable, friendly, and convincing. However, remember your employer and the insurance company do not have your best interests in mind. Their primary concern is to settle your claim for as little as possible. Do not try to handle your workers’ compensation claim on your own.

The workers’ compensation attorneys at BPS Lawyers will help you understand Connecticut law’s current state regarding workers’ compensation, explore your options, protect your rights, and file any necessary claims on your behalf. Additionally, even if your injuries do not qualify for workers’ compensation, you may have other legal options.

If you have suffered injuries or illnesses, you even suspect it may be work-related, contact us for help.