Home of the first-ever female American attorney and residence to Hollywood star John Wayne, the state of Iowa is truly an American pride. The other thing that the state is proud of is its workers.
Due to this, the employers in Iowa have taken up insurance coverage for their employees to cushion them against risks such as injuries and illnesses suffered at work. There are laws that protect the employees from the risks, and they are popularly known as the Iowa workers compensation laws. It’s advisable that both the employer and the employee are conversant with the regulations.
How the Workers Compensation Laws Work
The Iowa Workers Compensation Laws dictate the employer pay covered employees benefits that are accrued to them when they are ill or injured because of work duties. Even those employees who get injured outside the state are entitled to benefits provided that their job is Iowa-based.
However, individuals who earn a yearly wage of less than $1,500 are not covered by the insurance policies that apply to the compensation laws, including domestic help and independent contractors. They are advised to make arrangements for their own insurance coverage.
As a covered employee in Iowa, the Iowa workers compensation laws instruct you to see a doctor immediately after an accident. After seeking medical help, you can inform your employer. You have to do it within three months since if you delay, you may lose your benefits.
After informing your employer, he or she has four days to make a formal report to the Compensation Commissioner. Your boss has the liberty to select a medical provider on your behalf, but this does not forbid you from petitioning for your preferred care provider. Legally, the employer is expected to pay the benefits in two years.
Benefits Covered by the Workers Compensation Laws
The Iowa compensation laws are meant to provide employees with the following benefits:
- Medical Care Benefits: These include all costs that are related to the medical provisions issued to the employee following an accident. These include cost of medicines, travel expenses, consultations, and hospitalization costs.
- Recovery Benefits: When you are recovering at home, you are not able to report to work. You are offered benefits to compensate lost wages until you are ready to resume your duty.
- Disability Benefits: There are two types of disabilities that are covered by the compensation laws: temporary and permanent. Temporary disability benefits are for individuals who suffer short-term disabilities. In this case, they are compensated for the short period that they are incapacitated until they get back to work. On the other hand, permanent disability benefits apply to individuals who suffer long-term disabilities and are unable to continue working.
- Death Benefits: The law expects the employer to shoulder the death expenses. The employer should pay the burial costs as well as some monetary compensation to the dependants of the deceased.
Essentially, the Iowa workers compensation laws are meant to save you the energy and time of filing a lawsuit against your boss. Nevertheless, if your employer refuses to pay you the benefits after suffering an accident or illness at work, you may petition your case before the Compensation Commissioner in Iowa. You’ll need a competent lawyer, such as the Iowa workers compensation lawyer at Pothitakis Law Firm, to help you with the legal jargons and paperwork.
Generally, injuries and illnesses at the workplaces can lead to huge medical bills, lost earnings, loss of lives, and permanent scars. The workers’ compensation benefits are meant to help you alleviate the burdens but you’ll need to navigate through the stress of massive paperwork and complex laws. Your petitioning process starts with hiring a personal injury lawyer to help you.