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How does workers' compensation work in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, workers' compensation covers medical benefits, temporary total benefits and permanent and partial benefits. If a worker dies while on the job as a result of their employment, then workers' compensation also provides benefits to the workers' family.

Does it matter who's at fault for an accident? No. An employee who gets hurt at work receives benefits no matter who was at fault. The benefits do restrict the worker's right to a civil action lawsuit, however, so he won't be able to seek pain and suffering against the employer if he takes workers' compensation. Intentional acts that put the employee at risk are not included in that rule. For instance, if your employer pushes you down a flight of stairs, you would be entitled to a civil lawsuit and compensation through workers' compensation.

Once you are injured, you need to notify your employer if he doesn't already know. At that point, the employer has the option of choosing who you can see to treat your injuries. This is a law in New Jersey.

Now, your employer is meant to file a First Report of Injury to the state. This starts the process for workers' compensation. Following this, your employer's insurance team should reach out to you about your claim and discuss the medical assessment with you. If you need medical treatment, you should be provided with information on the authorized medical provider. You only start receiving disability benefits following seven days off the job, but your medical coverage starts from the moment you're injured while working on the job.

Source: State of New Jersey, "Injured Workers" accessed Feb. 23, 2015

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