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If an employee is injured while working in Michigan, the state’s workers’ compensation system helps to cover medical and wage benefits. However, workers’ compensation laws can be complex. Many injured workers may find difficulties in filing a claim on their own, successfully resolving a dispute with their employer about their claim or having to file an appeal when an initial request for workers’ compensation is denied.

… I felt that I was treated with dignity and respect instead of just being another person. I would recommend this law firm to anyone struggling with worker’s compensation issues.
– M.Peterson

At Jay Trucks & Associates, we have experience handing a wide variety of workers’ compensation claims and are prepared to put our knowledge and resources to use for you. Our firm has recovered millions of dollars in compensation for injured workers, including $480,000 for a pipefitter who sustained a severe head injury, $228,000 for a 43 year old male that suffered a right upper extremity injury and a $208,000 recovery for a 53 year old truck driver that suffered a neck and back injury.

Get in touch today to schedule a free consultation. You are under no obligation to hire us. If you do, there are no upfront attorney fees. You only pay us at the end of the legal process if we obtain compensation for you.

No Upfront Fees. Call (800) 762-8623.

Who Does the Workers’ Compensation Program Cover?

Michigan employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance if they have more than three employees working at any given time or one employee working no less than 35 hours in a week. Workers’ compensation helps to cover medical, wage loss and other benefits to workers injured or killed in the course of employment. This is outlined in greater detail in the Workers’ Disability Compensation Act.

Generally, anyone who performs services for pay is considered an employee. Independent contractors are not classified as employees and therefore are unable to qualify for workers’ compensation. In any case, it is important to seek legal representation after a workplace accident because you may have been misclassified as an independent contractor.

Workers’ compensation is also a no-fault system. Fault is not a factor in determining whether an injured worker is eligible to receive benefits, even if the he or she is partially to blame for what happened. Being approved for workers’ compensation does mean that you will not be able to sue your employer.

Options for Workers Injured Offsite

Injuries sustained while commuting to and from work are usually not covered by the workers’ compensation system. This could include injuries that occur during a recreational or social activity (holiday party, company picnic, etc.). It must be for a business-related purpose, such as traveling for a business trip or business meeting.

Each situation is different, which is why it is in your best interest to reach out to an experienced Lansing workers’ compensation attorney from our firm. We are available to take your call anytime, day or night.

Types of Workers Compensation Benefits

Workers’ compensation helps pay for hospital and other medical expenses that are reasonable and necessary to identify and treat a workplace injury or illness. Medical benefits generally cover the following:

  • Hospitalization
  • Emergency services
  • Doctor visits
  • Medications
  • Surgeries
  • Adaptive devices (wheelchairs, special vehicles, etc.)
  • Dental care

You may be asked to see your employer’s preferred doctor for the first 28 days of treatment. Afterward, you will have the ability to choose your own doctor once you have informed your employer and its insurer.

Partial Disability Benefits

These benefits are issued in the event an injury or illness that prevents you from doing your past work. Wage loss benefits account for 80 percent of the difference between your current earnings and what you earned prior to being injured. The maximum weekly benefit for 2020 is $934 and benefits are usually payed for the duration of your disability.

Michigan has a schedule to determine how long wage loss benefits should be paid to workers with certain injuries. For instance, benefits for the loss of a thumb is the highest at 65 weeks while the loss of a pinkie finger can be paid out for a maximum of 16 weeks.

Total Disability Benefits

These benefits are issued in the event you become permanently disabled (partially or totally) because of a workplace injury or illness. You may be able to obtain 80 percent of your average weekly wages you earned before the injury. The maximum is 90 percent of Michigan’s average weekly wage for a total disability.

However, state law does limit permanent and total disability to one or more of the following conditions:

  • Loss of sight of both eyes
  • Loss of both legs
  • Loss of both feet at or above the ankle
  • Loss of both arms
  • Loss of both hands at or above the wrist
  • Loss of any combination of limbs
  • Permanent and complete paralysis of both legs or arms, or one leg and one arm
  • Incurable insanity

Vocational Rehabilitation

The purpose of this benefit is to help injured workers find new employment or pay for training when they are unable to work in the same field as before. Vocational rehabilitation services cannot be provided for more than 52 weeks, unless under special conditions.

Death Benefits

When a worker dies from a work-related injury or illness, these benefits can issued to surviving family members. Up to $6,000 in funeral and burial expenses can be paid by the deceased worker’s employer. Death benefits are also about 80 percent of the worker’s average weekly wages for a maximum of 500 weeks after the date of death. The minimum weekly death benefit is $518.55 for 2020.

Contact our Lansing workers’ compensation lawyers for a free consultation. (800) 762-8623.

How Should I Report an Injury at Work?

It is important that you report an injury at work as soon as you can in order to start the claims process with Michigan’s Workers’ Compensation Agency (WCA). Under state law, you have 90 days to give notice of a work-related injury or illness to your employer. Waiting could give your employer and its insurer reason to question the validity of your injury. The last thing you want is a dispute or denial of your claim for benefits.

Your employer must then file an Employers’ Basic Report of Injury form (WC-100) if you will be missing more than one work week. The workers’ compensation insurance company will conduct an investigation into your claim. If an employer is unwilling to file the form for any reason, you may file an Employee’s Report of Claim (WC-117).

In most instances, you have two years from the date of the injury to file a workers’ compensation claim.

Complete our Free Case Evaluation form to get started.

When Will Benefits Be Paid Out?

Benefits must be paid out promptly after being approved for workers’ compensation. The first payment is to be issued on the 14th day after your employer has notice or knowledge of a disability or death and is paid in weekly installments.

Medical bills or travel allowances not paid within a 30-day period of becoming due are subject to a late penalty fee to the employer for every day after this period.

What to Do After a Benefits Claim Has Been Denied

You have the right to appeal if your claim for benefits has been denied. The most common reasons include:

  • Your injury was not reported on time
  • Lack of sufficient medical records
  • A discrepancy between the accident report and medical records
  • You were under the influence of drugs or alcohol when injured
  • Your condition does not meet state guidelines
  • You filed a claim after leaving the job

An application must be filed for mediation where a mediator will be assigned to help you and your employer or its insurer reach a resolution. If a dispute is not resolved during mediation, you will be granted a hearing before a workers’ compensation judge. Having a qualified lawyer to represent you during this process could be beneficial. He or she could help you meet filing deadlines, gather evidence and protect your legal rights.

Our Lansing workers’ compensation lawyers are well-versed in this process.

Reach Out to a Lansing Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

In over three decades, Jay Trucks & Associates has helped many injured workers obtain compensation for their injuries. We have successfully recovered more than $500 million for our personal injury clients.

Learn more about your potential benefits by during a free, no-obligation consultation. We do not charge any legal fees up front. We only receive payment for our services if we help obtain compensation on your behalf.

Our firm is available 24/7 to take your call. (800) 762-8623.

In Michigan, employees who get injured while performing their work duties are usually eligible for workers’ compensation benefits under the law. However, there are many complex issues that can sometimes delay an injured worker receiving those much-needed benefits.

He did a stand-up job in settling my worker’s comp. claim for 3 times the amount the insurance company was initially offering.
– D. Laskowski

At Jay Trucks and Associates, we can explain the process and guide you through the entire workers’ compensation application process. While we cannot guarantee the outcome, we can guide you through the process and work to build a strong argument for your claim.

Our Grand Rapids workers compensation lawyers have over 30 years of experience helping workers and other injured victims in Kent County and throughout Michigan state. We have achieved more than $500 million in compensation for our clients during that time, including a $480,000 recovery for a pipefitter who suffered a serious closed head injury. We also recovered $450,000 for another worker who injured his eye in a work-related accident.

Learn more about how we help injured employees in the free consultation we offer. You are not obligated to hire us after this meeting, but we can assess whether you may have a valid case and discuss your potential path for recovering workers’ compensation benefits. There is no financial risk, as we operate on contingency. This means no upfront costs and no fees unless we are successful in helping you recover your benefits.

Complete our Case Evaluation form today.

What Employees Are Covered By Workers’ Compensation?

The Workers’ Disability Compensation Act requires all employers in the state of Michigan to carry workers’ compensation insurance if they have at least three workers on their payroll, or one full-time employee working a minimum of 35 hours each week. These employees are eligible to receive compensation for lost wages and medical costs for injuries that occurred while performing work-related duties.

An employee, as defined by the state, is one who receives regular pay for services performed. Those who provide services as an independent contractor are not protected by this law and cannot recover workers’ compensation benefits.

If you are an injured as an independent contractor, but your employer both directs your work and determines your work hours, we recommend that you contact a licensed attorney. Our Grand Rapids workers’ compensation lawyers are prepared to assess whether you were misclassified by your employer. If so, you may still be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.

If you suffer a work-related injury and are covered by worker’s compensation, you do not have to prove negligence. Under workers’ compensation, fault is irrelevant, so sharing blame for an accident will not disqualify you from receiving benefits. You do, however, need to prove your injury or occupational illness is work-related.

Do All Work-Related Injuries Qualify for Benefits?

While no one can guarantee approval, if you sustained an injury or occupational illness while performing your duties as an employee and required more than simple first aid, it will likely be covered by Michigan’s workers’ compensation insurance. Injuries or illnesses could include:

Contact our firm to learn how we may be able to help you with your workers’ comp claim: (800) 762-8623

Injuries While Commuting to and From Work

In most cases, you will not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits if you suffer an accident while going to work or taking your lunch break. There may be some exceptions to this rule, such as if you were traveling to a business meeting, work conference or doing a work-related task during your normal hours of employment. Our attorneys can help determine whether you may still qualify for benefits in this type of situation.

In all workers’ compensation cases, whether due to a workplace injury, occupational disease or an aggravated preexisting condition, you must still be able to prove it was work-related.

What Benefits Are There for Injured Workers?

If you are an employee and suffer a qualifying work-related injury, you are eligible for full coverage of any necessary and reasonable medical treatment you need. Covered costs may include, but are not limited to:

  • Emergency medical care
  • Diagnostic testing, such as X-rays and MRIs
  • Surgical interventions
  • In-patient hospital stays
  • Mobility aids, such as crutches, walkers or wheelchairs
  • Prosthetics (artificial limbs)
  • Prescription medication related to your injuries
  • Hearing aid devices
  • Travel to and from your treatments
  • Other necessary doctor’s appointments

To be eligible for workers’ compensation and disability benefits, you must have a qualifying injury that lasts a minimum of seven days.

Partial Disability Lost Wages Benefit

You may be eligible for lost wages benefits if your injury results in a partial disability and you are unable to return to your previous job role or type of work.

This benefit provides wages for the duration of your disability that are equal to 80 percent of the difference between what you are able to earn after suffering your disability and what you previously earned before the accident or work-related illness.

In Michigan, there is a time limit to receiving benefits for certain types of injuries, such as when a worker loses one or more fingers in a work-related injury. For example, if you lose a thumb, your benefits may continue for up to 65 weeks. However, if you lose a pinky finger, that benefit is covered for up to 16 weeks.

Compensation for Total Disability

Total disability provides up to 80 percent of your former average weekly wage, with the maximum benefit that is equal to no more than 90 percent of the state’s average weekly wage.

Additional compensation limitations under Michigan law apply to certain injuries and medical conditions, including:

  • Loss of one or more limbs
  • Total loss of vision in both eyes
  • Incurable insanity
  • Loss of feet above the ankle
  • Total paralysis in both arms or legs, or a combination of the two
  • Loss of both hands above the wrist
  • Loss of any combination of limbs

According to Michigan Compiled Laws 418.351, benefits for permanent total disabilities are paid up to a maximum of 800 weeks, at which time your condition is reassessed to determine whether you still qualify for a total permanent disability benefit.

Vocational Rehabilitation

Sometimes workers are not able to return to their former position or even the same field for which they have knowledge, skills and experience. Vocational rehabilitation is intended to help workers under these circumstances by providing new training and skills for another position at the same company or a different career altogether. These benefits continue for up to one year.

Death Benefits

If a worker suffers a fatal injury or an occupational illness that ends in death, the worker’s dependents may be able to receive certain death benefits under workers’ compensation law.

Typically speaking, dependents may receive 80 percent of a deceased loved one’s average weekly salary. This benefit may continue for up to 500 weeks for adult dependents or longer for minor children. Additionally, funeral and burial costs must be provided by the employer, up to a maximum benefit of $6,000.

Jay Trucks & Associates. Call 24/7 to schedule your free consultation: (800) 762-8623.

How Do I Report an Injury?

After sustaining a work-related injury, you must notify your employer within 90 days from the date of the accident. If reporting an occupational illness or injury, you must report it to your employer within 90 days of the discovery or when you reasonably should have known. Waiting to report an accident or injury is always a bad idea, because it makes your injury seem less severe than it may be, and it also gives your employer a reason to argue that your injury may have not happened at work.

If the injury is a physical or mental incapacity, the filing deadline may be extended beyond the 90 days. However, this is something to discuss with your lawyer. Even under these circumstances, the injured worker must still report it to his or her employer within two years of the date of your recovery.

The state requires employers to file Form WC-100 after you notify your employer of your injury and it is confirmed that your injury will last longer than a week. After Form WC-100 is filed, the workers’ compensation provider will begin their review of your claim.

If your employer does not take proper steps to file this form, you may either call the Workers’ Compensation Disability Act office directly or submit notice to the carrier on your own using Form WC-117.

Can I Choose My Own Doctor?

Your employer can require you to see a doctor of his or her choosing for the first 28 days of your medical care. After that initial period, you may be able to choose a physician that you prefer, however you must first notify your employer and workers’ compensation insurer, in writing, about your decision.

Michigan does not require pre-authorization to obtain treatment for your injuries from either your employer or workers’ compensation carrier. The only caveat is that the medical care is considered reasonable and necessary for your recovery.

When Can I Expect My Benefits to Start?

Under state law, you should receive your payments in a regular and timely manner once your claim is approved. Along with your loss of income benefits, all reasonable and related medical costs throughout your recovery should also be covered.

You should begin receiving benefits checks for lost wages on the 14th day following your disability. If you do not receive your first check by day 30, it is considered late and you should follow-up to find out what is causing the delay.

Call Jay Trucks and Associates to discuss your eligibility for benefits: (800) 762-8623

Is It Possible to Appeal a Denied Claim?

Sometimes claims are initially denied, either by an employer who may dispute that an injury is related to your work duties, or by the workers’ compensation insurance provider. In either situation, you are within your rights to appeal by submitting Form WC-104C.

Your form will likely be reviewed through mediation if the Workers’ Compensation Agency believes it will be beneficial or if your employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance. Your appeal may also go through mediation if you do not have legal representation, you only need benefits to cover medical costs, or you need vocational rehabilitation.

More complex cases are handled via magistrate docket, and all relevant parties will receive notice to attend that pre-trial appointment.

The appeal is a complicated process that the licensed attorneys at our firm understand well, and we are prepared to utilize this in-depth knowledge of the law to help you fight to overturn a denied claim.

Contact a Grand Rapids Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Today

Whether you are newly injured or seeking to appeal a denial of your workers’ compensation benefits, our firm is available to help guide you through the process.

Our legal team at Jay Trucks and Associates has decades of legal experience, and we have recovered millions in compensation for our clients. We are dedicated to helping the injured receive the benefits they need.

Read some of the testimonials from other satisfied clients, and then call to schedule your no-obligation, completely risk free and zero-cost consultation. If we represent you, there are no upfront costs to worry about, and any legal fees are only paid after we are successful in recovering compensation for you.

Call Jay Trucks and Associates today: (800) 762-8623

Workers’ compensation is a state-mandated insurance coverage program, which provides certain benefits to workers who become injured or acquire an illness on the job. The claims process can be complex, time-consuming and there are strict deadlines to adhere to. It is important to seek the legal services of a qualified lawyer who has the experience and knowledge of state workers’ compensation laws.

… I hired Mr. Trucks to represent me in my worker’s comp claim. With his hard work, we won the case…
– JJ

At Jay Trucks & Associates, our Flint workers’ compensation attorneys have been successfully recovering benefits for injured workers across Genesee County and Michigan state. Some of our results have included a recovery of $480,000 for a pipefitter who sustained a severe closed head injury and a $450,000 recovery for a man who sustained an eye injury in a work accident. Over 30 years, we have recovered millions in compensation for our clients.

Speak with a member of our legal team in a free consultation. There is no obligation to move forward and no upfront fees if we represent you. We only get paid for our legal services if you obtain compensation.

Free Consultation. Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Am I Covered by Workers Compensation?

Michigan law requires employers who hire three or more employees or have one employee working at least 35 hours per week to have workers’ compensation insurance. This coverage helps provide medical and wage loss benefits to workers who suffer an injury arising out of and in the course of their employment. This is in accordance with the state’s Workers’ Disability Compensation Act.

An employee is generally anyone who performs services for pay. Independent contractors are not considered employees and are not covered under workers’ compensation. They should still consider calling a lawyer after an accident because they may have been misclassified as an independent contractor when they should be considered an employee, based on things like the control the employer had over your work and your hours worked.

Workers’ compensation is also a no-fault system, which means it does not matter who is at fault for an injury. Even if you share some responsibility, you may still be able to obtain benefits if you can show your injury or illness happened while on the job.

Injuries and Illnesses That May Qualify for Benefits

To obtain workers’ compensation benefits, your injury or illness must have required sufficient medical treatment beyond first aid. This includes workplace accidents that result in some form of physical disability.

Preexisting conditions aggravated or accelerated by employment, such as mental disabilities, degenerative arthritis or heart/cardiovascular conditions may also qualify a worker for benefits. Even occupational diseases are covered. These are injuries or diseases that arise over time such as silicosis, a lung disease caused by foundry workers breathing in dust containing silica, and other dust-related illnesses loggers are exposed to.

Call our firm today at (800) 762-8623 to learn if you may be eligible for workers’ compensation.

What If I Was Injured While Traveling?

If you get hurt going to or from your workplace, your injury is typically not covered unless it occurred on your employer’s premises. The only way you may be covered by workers’ compensation is if you were commuting for a business-related purpose. This includes a job or assignment requiring travel, such as a business meeting.

Other injuries not usually covered include those that happen during a recreational or social activity, such as a company picnic or office party.

Every situation is unique, which is why we recommend reaching out to an experienced Flint workers’ compensation lawyer from our firm. There is no risk in calling us to set up a free consultation.

Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Michigan

Getting the medical care that you need after a work-related injury or illness can be costly and cause unwanted stress. Michigan’s workers’ compensation system can help pay for all reasonable and necessary medical treatment. Our legal team is prepared to help you obtain the benefits you need to cover medical expenses such as:

  • Hospital stays
  • Doctor visits
  • Surgery
  • Dental care
  • Assistive devices (hearing aids, etc.)
  • Prosthetics
  • Prescription medications

For the first 28 days of treatment, you may be required to see your employer’s preferred doctor. After 28 days, you can choose your own doctor, but you must inform your employer beforehand.

You may also be compensated for lost wages when you have a temporary or permanent disability lasting seven days or more that causes you to miss work.

Partial Disability Payments for Loss of Wages

These benefits are issued if your injury or illness prevents you from working in the same capacity as before. You may be eligible for benefits to compensate you for loss of wages.

Wages loss benefits are 80 percent of the difference between what you are earning now and what you earned before the injury. For 2020, the maximum weekly benefit is $934. These benefits are generally paid for the duration of the disability.

Michigan has a schedule for benefits for certain injuries. For example, you can receive benefits for the loss of a thumb for 65 weeks. Benefits for the loss of an index finger can be paid out for a maximum of 38 weeks.

Total Disability Compensation

These benefits are issued if you become permanently disabled, either partially or totally, due to a work-related injury or illness. You may be eligible to receive 80 percent of your average weekly wage prior to being injured up to a maximum of 90 percent of the state’s average weekly wage for a total disability.

Michigan law does limit total disability compensation to certain conditions:

  • Loss of arms or legs
  • Loss of feet above the ankle
  • Lost sight in both eyes
  • Insanity that is incurable
  • Complete paralysis in both arms or legs, or a combination of the two
  • Loss of both hands above the wrist
  • Loss of any combination of limbs

Permanent disability benefits are paid in lump sum payments and eligibility can only happen once you have reached maximum medical improvement, meaning there are no further treatment options that could improve your condition.

Vocational Rehabilitation

These services are designed to help meet your employment goals in the event you can no longer work in the same field you had experience and training in. This could include getting retrained so that you can return to your employer in another position or have the skills necessary to find work elsewhere. These benefits stop after one year, unless you have special circumstances.

Death Benefits

When an injury or illness results in death, death benefits can be paid to eligible dependents up to a certain limit. These benefits are generally 80 percent of the deceased worker’s average weekly wages for a maximum of 500 weeks from the date of death. It may be longer if dependent children are involved. The minimum weekly death benefit for 2020 is $518.55. A maximum of $6,000 in reasonable funeral and burial expenses must also be paid by the worker’s employer.

Need Some Help? Call: (800) 762-8623.

Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim

After an accident, you should notify your employer within 90 days from the date you were hurt on the job or when you became ill due to work conditions. However, we recommend that you report an injury or illness as soon as possible to begin the claims process with Michigan’s Workers’ Compensation Agency (WCA).

Once notified, your employer is responsible for filing an Employers’ Basic Report of Injury (form 100) if you will likely miss at least one week of work. The insurance company will then begin its investigation. In the event your employer refuses to recognize your claim and report your injury or illness, you may call the WCA to report the claim or file an Employee’s Report of Claim (form 117) so your employer’s insurer is notified.

Workers’ compensation claims in Michigan must generally be filed within two years from the date of injury.

When Will I Start Receiving Benefits?

Prompt payment of benefits is required under state law. The first workers’ compensation payment is due on the 14th day after your employer has notice of a disability or death and must be paid on a weekly basis.

If medical bills and/or weekly compensation benefits are not issued within 30 days of becoming due, a late penalty fee may be issued to the employer for each day over this 30-day deadline.

Discuss the value of your benefits with a licensed Flint workers’ compensation attorney.

Can I Appeal a Denied Claim?

If your claim is disputed or denied either by your employer or his or her insurance company, you have a right to appeal it. Claims are often denied due to insufficient medical records.

You must file an application to request mediation. Mediation will be considered if you are only asking for medical benefits or vocational benefits, your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, or you are not being represented by an attorney.

If eligible, the case will be assigned to a mediator to help you and your employer or its insurer reach a resolution. Disputes unresolved through mediation will be assigned a trial date before a workers’ compensation judge. An attorney working on your behalf at this stage could be very beneficial in meeting deadlines, gathering evidence and representing your best interests.

Our Flint workers’ compensation attorneys understand the appeals process and what it takes to get an approval for workers’ compensation benefits. We are ready to guide you every step of the way.

Call a Flint Workers’ Compensation Lawyer to Get Started

At Jay Trucks & Associates, we have more than 30 years of experience helping injured workers and their families obtain the benefits they need, recovering over $500 million in compensation on behalf of our clients.

Request a free consultation to learn about your rights and legal options. There is no risk in calling us and no obligation to hire us. We do not charge any fees up front. You only pay us at the end of the legal process if we successfully help you recover compensation.

We are ready to take your call at (800) 762-8623.

When an employee gets injured on the job, he or she may assume Michigan’s workers’ compensation system will take care of it. However, the process is often more time-consuming and complicated than many injured workers expect.

Todd Trucks did a great job and was a good friend to me throughout my worker’s compensation claim….
– R. Deming

Jay Trucks and Associates’ licensed Clare workers’ compensation lawyers have a proven track record of recovering benefits for injured workers, including $480,000 recovered for a pipefitter who suffered a severe closed head injury in a work accident and a $450,000 recovery for a 51 year old worker that sustained an eye injury. Over more than three decades, our firm has obtained more than $500 million in compensation on behalf of our clients.

A free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys is free of charge and comes with no obligation to take legal action. We do not get paid unless our clients are paid. There is no risk to you in calling us.

Jay Truck and Associates. Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Who is Covered by Workers’ Compensation in Michigan?

Employers that have three or more employees or one employee working 35 hours or more each week must purchase workers’ compensation insurance. This coverage provides compensation to employees who suffer a personal injury “arising out of and in the course of employment,” according to Michigan’s Workers’ Disability Compensation Act.

Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, so it does not matter who caused the injury. You may be responsible for it, but you should receive benefits if you can prove the injury is directly related to your job.

What About Occupational Diseases?

A personal injury can also be a disease or disability that is a result of conditions specific to your job, also known as an occupational disease. This definition excludes diseases the public is generally exposed to outside of the workplace, like the flu.

All employers in Michigan contribute to a special fund to provide compensation to employees who suffer certain dust-related diseases or injuries while doing certain types of work in the logging industry. For example, this fund provides special protection for foundry workers who develop silicosis.

If you have a dust-related disease, you should meet with an experienced Clare workers’ compensation lawyer to learn more about benefits you may be eligible to receive.

What About Preexisting Injuries?

You may also be able to obtain benefits if a preexisting injury or illness becomes aggravated or accelerated by your employment. Examples of preexisting conditions that could be accelerated by employment include mental disabilities, arthritis and heart conditions.

However, there are specific requirements for obtaining coverage, such as proving your condition was significantly aggravated. If you are pursuing compensation for a mental disability, you must show it is a result of events during your employment.

We Only Get Paid When We Win. (800) 762-8623

Independent Contractors and Workers’ Compensation

The workers’ compensation system covers employees only. Independent contractors are not covered.

The problem is employers often classify workers as independent contractors when they should employees. Employers do this to avoid the expense of workers’ compensation insurance for employees.

If you have reason to believe you are in this situation, call our experienced workers’ compensation attorneys in Clare for a free consultation.

We are ready to review how your employer controls the work you do to determine if you should be considered an employee. Some of the factors we may consider include:

  • If your hours worked were determined by your employer
  • If your employer decided how your work should be completed
  • Who supplied tools and equipment used to complete your work?
  • How were paid when you completed work?

What if I Was Injured Offsite?

Injuries that occur while you are commuting to or from work are generally not covered by Michigan’s workers’ compensation system. However, if travel is required, such as a business trip, you are likely covered when you are traveling, unless you deviated from the business purpose of your trip.

You may also be covered for offsite activities that are directly related to your job. If an injury occurs during an event or situation whose primary purpose is social or recreational, the injury is not covered. That means injuries at holiday parties or company picnics are probably not covered.

As this can be a complex and confusing issue, it is generally best to talk to a qualified lawyer about it.

Free Consultation. Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Benefits for Injured Workers

If you suffer a qualifying injury, Michigan law says you are eligible for coverage for all medical care that is reasonable and necessary for the treatment of your injury. Reasonable and necessary medical care may include things like:

  • Medicines
  • Treatment at a hospital or emergency room
  • Surgery
  • Dental care
  • Crutches
  • Artificial limbs
  • Hearing aids

If your injury or disability lasts at least seven days, you are eligible for disability benefits to replace lost wages.

Partial Disability

If you can still work in some capacity while recovering, you may be eligible for compensation equaling 80 percent of the difference between your current earning capacity and your earning capacity before the accident.

Michigan has a schedule to determine how long wage loss benefits should be paid when workers suffer certain injuries. For example, the schedule for the loss of fingers is as follows:

  • Thumb – 65 weeks
  • Index finger – 38 weeks
  • Middle finger – 33 weeks
  • Ring finger – 22 weeks
  • Pinkie finger – 16 weeks

Total Disability

When an injury is severe it prevents you from working in any capacity, either temporarily, or for the rest of your life, you may be eligible for total disability benefits. However, state law limits permanent and total disability to one or more of the following conditions:

  • Loss of sight in both eyes
  • Loss of both legs
  • Loss of feet above the ankle
  • Loss of both arms
  • Loss of both hands at or above the wrist
  • Loss of any combination of the limbs/functions in the bullets above
  • Permanent, complete paralysis in both legs or arms, or one leg and one arm
  • Incurable insanity

In these situations, workers are eligible for 80 percent of their average weekly wage from before their injury. Total disability is subject to a limit of 90 percent of the state’s average weekly wage.

These benefits are paid out for the duration of your disability. If your disability continues for 800 weeks, a determination will be made about whether you are still permanently and totally disabled (Michigan Compiled Laws 418.351).

Death Benefits

If you lost a loved one because of a work injury, and you or others were wholly dependent on his or her earnings for support, you may be eligible for weekly payments of 80 percent of your loved one’s average weekly wage, subject to a maximum of 90 percent of the state average weekly wage. These benefits are paid for a maximum of 500 weeks from the date of death.

At the end of the 500 weeks, if anyone wholly or partially dependent on the deceased is under 21 years of age, a workers’ compensation magistrate has the authority to order the employer to continue to provide benefits until the individual turns 21.

Employers must also provide compensation for reasonable expenses for the funeral and burial, not to exceed $6,000, or the actual cost, whichever amount is less.

Vocational Rehabilitation

If you are no longer able to perform work in the field in which you have experience and have been trained, you may be eligible for vocational rehabilitation services that are reasonable and necessary to allow you to return to useful employment. This may include retraining and job placement.

These services cannot be provided for more than 52 weeks, unless it is a special situation.

Free Consultation. Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Reporting a Work Injury

You must report an injury to your employer within 90 days of it occurring, or 90 days from the date when you knew or should have known about the injury. However, it is generally best to report an injury or disability as soon as possible to get the process started. If you wait, your employer may question whether your injury is connected to your job.

There is an exception to this 90-day deadline for physical or mental incapacity. An injury must be reported within two years of the date you are no longer physically or mentally incapacitated.

Your employer should have a procedure for reporting a work injury if your business office is closed.

Once notified of an injury, your employer must file Form WC-100 if it looks like the injury will last more than a week. Once the form is filed, the insurance company begins an investigation.

If for some reason your employer does not file a claim, you can do so yourself. File Form WC-117 so your employer’s insurance carrier will be notified.

You must file a workers’ compensation claim within two years of the date of the injury.

Can I Be Treated by My Regular Doctor?

For the first four weeks (28 days) of your treatment, your employer chooses your doctor. Once those 28 days pass, you can change doctors by asking your employer and its insurance company in writing.

Michigan law does not require injured workers to obtain authorization from the insurance company or employer to receive treatment, provided treatment is reasonably necessary.

Have questions? We have answers. Ph: (800) 762-8623.

When Are Benefits Paid Out?

The law requires prompt, regular payment of benefits employees are eligible to receive. They must cover medical bills for any reasonable, necessary treatment.

Wage loss benefits are paid on the 14th day you are disabled. Benefit checks are late if they are not received within 30 days of the due date.

What Happens if My Claim is Denied?

When a dispute arises between you and your employer or its workers’ compensation carrier, you can file Form WC-104C.

You will go through mediation if your claim fits the following criteria:

  • You are seeking medical benefits only
  • You are not being represented by an attorney
  • The Workers’ Compensation Agency determines mediation may resolve the dispute
  • You are seeking vocational rehabilitation only
  • Your employer lacks workers’ compensation insurance

Otherwise, your case will be sent to magistrate’s docket and the relevant parties will be served with notice of the date, time and location of a pre-trial meeting.

Our attorneys have detailed knowledge of this process and what it often takes to overturn a denial of a workers’ compensation claim. We are prepare to guide you each step of the way.

Call a Licensed Clare Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today

Has your claim been denied?

Are you involved in a dispute with your employer or its workers’ compensation insurance carrier?

Our experienced attorneys may be able to assist you in pursuing benefits for your injury or illness. Schedule your free consultation today to find out how we may be able to assist you. There is no obligation to take legal action and there are no legal fees unless we recover compensation.

In 30 years serving Michigan residents, we have been able to recover more than $500 million in compensation, including millions for injured workers, including a $300,000 recovery for a mechanic who suffered a lower back injury.

Call a Clare workers’ compensation lawyer at (800) 762-8623. No upfront cost or obligation.

Jay Trucks & Associates –
Michigan’s Lawyers For The Injured

If you became ill, were injured or lost a loved one in a workplace accident, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation. Having a licensed workers compensation lawyer on your side may make a difference in the outcome of your workers’ compensation claim.

My wife and I would like to thank Todd Trucks for getting us a worker’s comp. settlement of almost 10 times the original amount that was offered to us by the comp. insurance company.
– H. Hoover

Set up a free consultation today with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer from Jay Trucks and Associates. Our lawyers have a wealth of legal experience handling workers’ compensation claims and have helped many clients recover compensation to cover medical expenses and lost income. For example, we were able to recover $698,000 for a 55-year-old tree cutter who suffered a closed head injury.

Contact a Traverse City workers’ compensation lawyer from Jay Trucks and Associates for a free workers’ compensation claim review. If your claim was delayed or denied by your employer, our lawyers have detailed knowledge of the appeals process. We charge you nothing, unless we obtain financial compensation.

Dial (800) 762-8623 to learn more about your workers’ compensation claim, or fill out a Free Case Evaluation form and someone will contact you shortly.

Jay Trucks & Associates. No upfront fees.

Medical Benefits Available for Workers Injured on the Job

Workers who suffered an injury at the workplace could be fully covered for any reasonable and necessary medical expenses related to the injury, such as:

  • Hospital stays
  • Doctor’s appointments
  • Medical tests (CT Scans, MRI’s, X-rays, etc.)
  • Surgery
  • Emergency care
  • Medications
  • Transportation to and from medical visits
  • Rehabilitation sessions
  • Physical therapy
  • Assistive medical equipment or devices (hearing aids, prosthetics, wheelchairs, etc.)

If you are unsure whether your injury qualifies for benefits, you may be able to find out in a free consultation when you contact a Traverse City workers’ compensation lawyer at Jay Trucks and Associates.

Lost Income

In addition to medical coverage, if you are unable to return to work, your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance may also cover a percentage of lost income.

Partial Disability Benefits

Sometimes workers become partially disabled and can still return to work in a lesser role, which means they may earn less. If you are partially disabled due to your injury and cannot return to work in the same capacity as before the injury, you could qualify for these benefits.

Partial disability victims can receive up to 80 percent of the difference of what they were earning before the injury compared to their new weekly salary. Under Michigan’s Worker’s Disability Compensation Act, there are certain types of injuries that could have a determined number of weeks you may be able to receive partial disability benefits.

Total Disability Benefits

When workers are completely disabled and unable to return to work in any capacity, they may qualify for up to 80 percent of their previous weekly salary. The maximum benefit is 90 percent of the state’s weekly average earnings.

Total disability payments can be paid for as much as 800 weeks; however, your condition will be reexamined after this period to determine if you are still eligible to continue receiving these benefits.

Vocational Rehabilitation

Workers who were injured at work and can return but not in the same position, could be eligible for compensation to help them obtain new skills and knowledge to work in a different job or different field entirely.

Death Benefits

If you lost a loved one due to a workplace accident or illness, you could receive compensation for funeral and burial costs, and you could receive 80 percent of the deceased loved one’s average weekly salary. Adult family members could receive this benefit for up to 500 weeks and surviving children could have it longer.

Call Jay Trucks & Associates today at (800) 762-8623 to learn more about workers’ compensation benefits that may be available to you and your family.

Are All Workers Covered Under Workers’ Comp?

Michigan law requires all employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance if they have at least one full-time employee working a minimum of 35 hours per week, or at least three total employees on their payroll. These employees are covered under the workers’ compensation system if they suffer an injury while performing work-related activities.

However, the workers’ compensation system does not cover independent contractors. The state recognizes an employee as one who performs services for regular pay. However, if your employer calls you an independent contractor but they supervise your work and determine your work schedule, you may have been misclassified as an independent contractor and you could be eligible for compensation.

If you were injured at work and misclassified by your employer, we suggest you contact one of our knowledgeable Traverse City workers’ compensation attorneys.

Reporting Your Workplace Injury

If you were injured at work, you only have 90 days from the date you sustained the injury, to notify your employer. If you decide to wait to report your injury, your employer could try to dispute it by saying that your injury may have occurred outside of the workplace.

In certain cases that involve mental or physical incapacity, you could have more than 90 days to notify your employer. However, even these types of injuries need to be reported to your employer within two years from the date of the injury.

If you notify your employer that your work injury is expected to keep you out of work for more than one week, the employer is required under Michigan law to file a Form WC-100. After this form is filed, the workers’ compensation insurer will begin reviewing your claim.

If your employer fails to file this form, call the Workers’ Disability Compensation Agency and contact a Traverse City workers’ compensation lawyer at Jay Trucks and Associates.

Jay Trucks & Associates Ph: (800) 762-8623.

Appealing a Denied Claim

Workers’ compensation claims can sometimes be denied by the employer or by the insurance company. For example, the employer might try to say that your injury was not sustained at the workplace or that you were not taking part in a work-related activity. The workers’ compensation insurance company might say that you are classified as a contractor rather than an employee that should be covered under workers’ compensation benefits.

Our attorneys are prepared to guide you through each step of the appeals process, pursuing the benefits you may need to help you recover from your injury.

How Long Will It Take to Receive Benefits?

Michigan law states that workers’ compensation checks should be sent out after approval in a regular and timely manner.

Lost income checks should be sent out within 14 days, however, if you do not receive any payments after 30 days, you should follow up with the Workers’ Disability Compensation Agency.

Call Jay Trucks and Associates today at (800) 762-8623 for a free consultation.

Choosing a Doctor for Your Claim

Your employer can choose your treating doctor for the first 28 days of your treatment. If you want to see your own doctor after this period, you must first provide a written notification about your decision to your employer and the workers’ compensation insurer.

You are not required to have pre-authorization from your employer or workers’ compensation insurer to receive medical treatment for your injuries in Michigan.

Call a Traverse City Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today

When a worker is injured on the job, it could leave the individual and his or her family in a difficult financial situation. Having a dedicated attorney review your claim could be an important next step as you attempt to recover the funds you may need for medical expenses and lost wages.

The attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates have been protecting the rights of the injured people of Michigan for over 30 years. With over 150 years of combined legal experience, our attorneys have a wealth of knowledge of the laws in Michigan. We know how the workers’ compensation process works and we are prepared to pursue maximum benefits for your injury claim.

Schedule a no-cost, no-obligation review of your workers’ compensation claim today with one of our trusted legal professionals. We charge zero upfront fees and we do not receive payment unless we help you recover compensation.

Call (800) 762-8623 or complete our
free online review form.