Many different occupations require the loading and unloading of cargo. These tasks inherently come with a high risk of back injuries, crushing injuries, and even spinal cord or traumatic brain injuries.
When and if such an injury happens on the job, it is reasonable to assume your employer will step in to help pay for your medical care and lost wages. However, while South Carolina law does require most employers in the state to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees, some employers and workers’ comp insurance companies illegally deny or delay benefits.
If you believe you are experiencing such maltreatment, it may be beneficial for you to contact an experienced Port of Charleston cargo worker injury lawyer. A seasoned attorney could help you take stock of your injuries and pursue all the compensation to which state workers’ comp laws entitle you.
Workers’ Compensation Laws in Port of Charleston
In South Carolina, most employers with four or more employees are mandated to have workers’ compensation insurance coverage. However, the agricultural and railroad industries are exempt from this law, and nautical workers are covered by a different set of federal laws that allow them to directly sue their employers rather than receiving workers’ compensation.
Additionally, certain conditions that are unaccompanied by physical injury and may result from any typical work interaction are not covered under this type of insurance. These include conditions such as:
- Mental injuries
- Heart attacks
Otherwise, most occupational diseases and injuries are covered under workers’ compensation plans.
Time Limit for Filing a Claim
Injured employees are required to follow specific rules when filing a claim. As noted in South Carolina Code §42-15-10, employees have a duty to report their workplace injury to their employer as soon as possible but no later than 90 days after their injury occurred. A Port of Charleston cargo worker injury lawyer could help ensure injured workers get their claims filed on time.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
By law, employees who are injured on the job may be entitled to several different types of workers’ compensation benefits depending on the circumstances. Through workers’ comp insurance, the employer may provide compensation for any necessary medical treatments, permanent disability or disfigurement, and vocational rehabilitation.
Except in the case of emergencies, injured employees are required by state law to use whichever doctor and medical facilities their employer selects. Failure to do so could mean that the employee pays out of their own pocket for that portion of their medical care, as the employer is not legally required to cover these expenses.
Compensation for lost wages can also be included in workers’ comp benefits but would be dependent on the severity and duration of the injured party’s disability. An employee’s weekly wages may be reimbursed at 66.6 percent of their average weekly wages. If an employee is severely disabled and unable to return to their prior occupation, vocational rehabilitation may be available. Speak with a knowledgeable lawyer today for more information about workers’ compensation benefits.
Speak with a Port of Charleston Cargo Worker Injury Attorney
If you work hard for your employer and were hurt doing just that, you may be wondering how you can pay your medical bills and make up for your lost income. If your workers’ comp claim was denied or you believe you are not being provided with all of the benefits you are entitled to, a qualified Port of Charleston cargo worker injury lawyer may be able to help.
If your case has merit, a qualified attorney could represent you and your best interests in fighting for the benefits you deserve. Call today to learn more about your options for pursuing your workers’ comp benefits.