Pursuant to the New Jersey Workers Compensation Act, if an employee is injured in a workplace accident, the employer is responsible for all medical treatment resulting from the injury. The Act further provides, however, that the employer is entitled to choose an authorized doctor to treat the injured employee. If an injured employee fails to be treated by an authorized doctor chosen by his or her employer, they may be personally liable for all medical bills arising from the workplace accident or injury.
In addition, the Act provides that an employee is entitled to receive Temporary Total Disability Benefits for the period that the employee is out of work. These temporary benefits are generally 70% of the employee’s gross weekly earnings and may be paid for a maximum of 400 weeks. To receive these benefits, the injured employee must be treated by an “authorized doctor” and must be out of work. Once the authorized doctor determines that the injured employee has reached maximum medical benefit, meaning that he or she will no longer benefit from further treatment even if the employee is still experiencing some pain and other symptoms, the employee will be medically released to return to work and the Temporary Total Disability Benefits will be suspended.
An injured employee with a permanent injury may also be entitled to permanency benefits under the New Jersey Workers Compensation Act. The amount of permanency benefits is determined by the significance and severity of the permanent injury.
For an employee to be entitled to Workers’ Compensation damages, the Act requires the employee to notify his or her employer of any injury that occurs on the job. Furthermore, an injured employee must report any workplace accident or injury within ninety (90) days of the accident or injury. If you are injured in a workplace accident, it is strongly advisable to fill out an accident report immediately after the accident.
Alternatively, if an employer believes that an employee has not in fact suffered from a workplace accident or that an employee’s injury is not severe and determines that he or she is not entitled to temporary total benefits, the injured employee may seek assistance from the Temporary Disability Bureau. To be eligible for such benefits, the employee must be receiving treatment from any doctor and must be out of work. In addition, Social Security disability benefits may be available to an employee who is expected to suffer permanent and long-term injuries due to the workplace accident.
At the law offices of Gregg A. Wisotsky, Esq., Partner, Javerbaum Wurgaft Hicks Kahn Wikstrom & Sinins, PC, we help injured workers receive payment for medical bills, job training, temporary disability benefits, permanent partial disability benefits, and total disability benefits and death benefits if a fatal accident occurred. If you have further questions or concerns about Workers’ Compensation law or a “workers’ comp.” claim in New Jersey, please call 973-898-0161 to set up an appointment. We represent injured workers, employees and families throughout New Jersey.