When you can’t remain employed because of an injury or chronic illness, you may be entitled to worker’s compensation or Social Security disability benefits, depending on how you became incapacitated and unable to perform work duties. Both programs provide financial assistance to adults who cannot be “gainfully” employed, or work enough to earn a living salary.
When an employee is injured at work severely enough to prevent them from doing their usual tasks, they may apply for and receive worker’s compensation benefits instead of litigating the matter. Employers must carry workers compensation insurance to cover serious injuries suffered by workers. In addition, worker’s compensation covers employees for injuries an employer may be liable for (carpal tunnel syndrome in the case of computer workers, for example).
If an insurance company or the employer is disputing the amount an employee should receive through worker’s compensation, Social Security disability benefits may be provided until disputes are resolved. However, be aware the state will ask you to return the money you received from them if your worker’s compensation case is settled.
Disability benefits are paid to workers who are disabled, are expected to remain disabled for at least 12 months or have been diagnosed with a terminal illness. If you have paid in enough money to be covered by the SSD program, you could draw both benefit payments at the same time. If you earn under $100,000 annually, however, your SSD could be reduced due to receiving worker’s compensation.
Navigating the legal aspects of applying for worker’s compensation and disability benefits can be overwhelming. Misfiling a document or failing to meet court deadlines can seriously delay your benefits. Contact the Decker Law Office as soon as possible if you were injured at work and can no longer perform your duties. Our attorneys also handle worker’s compensation Mexico filings.