Workers’ compensation laws are different for every state. Although they pretty much have the same goal, some specific details can vary per city. Since state legislations govern these laws, they are designed by the federal statutes to provide fixed awards to employees or their dependents in work-related accidents.
Successful workers’ compensation claims can cover medical treatment, time of payments or lost wages, permanent partial or total disability compensations, and other benefits. Unfortunately, work-related injuries are far more common than most people think. In fact, there are many industries with fatal injuries that cause either death or amputation.
Back in 2015, American employers paid around $61.9 billion for workers’ compensation. Some of these injuries include motor vehicle injuries, fire and burn injuries, and slip and fall injuries. These have resulted in bone fractures and dislocations, amputations, infections, and diseases that cost around $98,000 at most in one category.
Here are the top five states with the highest compensation cost due to filed workers’ compensation claims.
Surprisingly, Alaska is known as the most expensive state when it comes to workers’ compensation claims. The companies have spent as much as $2.27 for every $100 payroll. It covers the premium benefits for the insurances in the event that an employee gets injured. This is due to a large number of heavy extraction industries in the area.
Apart from that, they also have significant hospitals that are situated quite far from many people. Employees who experience injuries in the workplace can immediately contact their supervisor or employer after receiving the medical attention they need. They also have a Report of Occupational Injury or Illness form that you can fill up as a written notice.
In more severe cases, the state grants death benefits to ensure that the family has sufficient financial support to cope with the accident. Although Alaska requires every business to comply with the worker’s compensation law, they have strict policies when it comes to approving claims. Some employers can legally self-insure their workers’ comp claims.
Next to Alaska, Montana is the next state that spends a little over two bucks for their city’s compensation claims. Employers have around $2.01 to pay for workers’ compensation claims if any sort of injury may occur. The city’s workers’ compensation law ensures that companies comply with the state laws in relation to benefits and claims.
Like most compensation laws, it also covers injured workers for their medical bills, lost wages, and temporary or permanent impairments as a result of the accident. However, special cases also have additional benefits that injured workers can claim if they follow particular procedures.
In 2018, an established maximum benefit for permanent disabilities was around $400 per week. This entails the injured workers reaching a settlement and recovering a large sum of money due to the permanent damage. The costs for these compensation claims are also due to a large number of heavy extraction industries prone to work-related accidents in Montana.
California’s laws on short-term disability and maternity leaves give it a spot on the list for having a high workers’ compensation cost. As of 2021, there are 13,546 filed claims and around 10,799 cases in the city. In their statutory limits, all employees have entitled to a minimum of $100,00 compensation for every employee, per accident occurrence.
However, injured workers must go through the necessary legal procedures in order to prove that they have sustained work-related injuries and are qualified for compensation. The reimbursements and benefits include retraining programs, rehabilitation expenses, disability payments, beneficiary expenses, and employer liabilities.
Unfortunately, a worker cannot avail of the said reimbursements if he or she acquires a particular injury due to participation in illegal activities or during an off-duty incident. Their laws can protect the employees and small businesses because the state law coverage pays for injured employees’ medical care.
4. South Carolina
In South Carolina, there are reportedly 34,000 nonfatal workplace injuries. As for the city’s expenses, companies spend around $1.83 per employee for their workers’ compensation laws. An injured worker can receive a maximum of $866.76 for their temporary total disability payments once they have successfully filed their claim.
Other temporary partial disability benefits include receiving compensation for lost wages. For instance, if you went from earning $900 a week to only $600 due to your inability to handle heavier workloads because of an accident, you will receive two-thirds of the $900, which is around $300 or $200, depending on your pay.
Particular injuries also entail you to a maximum of 500 weeks worth of benefits depending on the severity of your injury. The number of benefits that you receive will depend on the success of your claim and how much workmans comp was your lawyer able to recover. They will also consider your lost earning capacities.
The last city we have on the list is Wyoming, where companies spend around $1.70 for their insurance cases. Every business needs to ensure that they offer proper coverage. However, they are able to work with a smaller budget by excluding casual laborers, most professional athletes, private employees, volunteers, and other workers from the insurance.
Due to its monopolistic state, employees can’t buy insurance coverage from private companies. Instead, they have to get it from a workers’ comp plan run by the state. They also do not allow employers to self-insure their workers’ compensation claims. Instead, every state employer must purchase workers’ comp insurance from the state plan.
Since Wyoming has a whopping 100,000 incident rate for job-related fatalities, it has death benefits. The employee’s surviving spouse, minor children, or other dependents can qualify for a monthly benefit for a maximum of 100 months, depending on the reimbursement. Minimum services include 80% payment of the state’s average monthly wage.
In summary, the number of work-related accidents is highly associated with the number of filed claims. Many law offices assist injured workers in acquiring their workers’ compensation and receiving the maximum reimbursement. However, different cases and scenarios will give them other benefits.