Contributed by Vounce & Vtipil, P.A.
What to Do If Your Employer Does Not Have Workers’ Compensation Insurance
If you are injured at work, most companies have workers’ compensation insurance to help pay for your medical expenses. Workers’ compensation insurance may also provide disability payments for time you have to take off work (usually around two-thirds of your normal salary). It may also pay additional benefits like retraining and future medical expenses, including rehabilitation.
Most companies in North Carolina that employ three or more employees (part-time or full-time) are required to carry worker’s compensation insurance. There are some exceptions, however.
Unfortunately, many North Carolina companies are not in compliance with the law. So what happens if you are injured at work and the company you work for does not provide coverage for you? You may have a few options.
What Does North Carolina Require?
Most employers in North Carolina are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
There are a few exceptions to the rule. For instance, companies are generally exempt if they have fewer than three employees, but the number is slightly different for certain industries. If a company is in the business of agriculture or domestic services, or if they operate a sawmill or logging company, they are exempt if they have fewer than 10 employees. If the company uses radiation in its line of work, there is no exemption.
There are also exceptions for some railroads, federal government employees and prisoners.
The N.C. Workers’ Comp Act ensures that an employee or their family will receive workers’ compensation benefits if the worker is injured or dies while on the job.
Some estimates say that around 30,000 North Carolina businesses do not have the required workers’ compensation insurance.
If Your Employer Does Not Carry Workers’ Comp Coverage
If you do not know yet if your North Carolina employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, go here to use our free tool to check.
If you are injured at work and your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, don’t panic. You may still have options. The best thing to do if you have been injured at work is to talk to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. They can evaluate your case and lay out your options for you.
Two options that you may have for seeking compensation for your injuries are:
1. Filing a lawsuit against your employer
2. Filing a claim with the North Carolina Industrial Commission
What If Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Is Denied?
If your employer does carry workers’ compensation insurance, what happens if you file a claim but it is denied? You still have some options. It is not uncommon for an insurance company to find some reason to attempt to deny a claim.
If that happens to you, you can appeal by filing an “Application for Adjudication of Claim.” The appeal can be settled by agreement or it could result in a trial. An experienced attorney knows the ins and outs of this process and can help guide you through an appeal.
If your employer does not have workers’ comp insurance or your claim is denied, that is not necessarily the end of the story. There is hope. You have options for pursuing compensation for your work injuries or for appealing a claim denial. An attorney can help analyze your case and let you know what your options are.