If you have suffered a work-related injury or illness, you may wonder when you will start receiving workers’ compensation benefits. It is important to understand the basics of the workers’ compensation process so that you have an idea of when your payments might start.
There are a few things that you should know.
California’s workers’ compensation laws allow workers 30 days to report a work-related injury. Remember that the sooner you report your injury, the sooner you can seek compensation and support.
When you cannot work for more than 3 days as a result of your injury, you might qualify for disability benefits under the workers’ compensation claim. In those cases, you can typically expect your first disability benefit payment within 14 days of reporting your injury. If any delays keep you from receiving that payment within 14 days, the insurance carrier should notify you.
You receive wage replacement benefits for the period when you cannot work. These payments cover a portion of your lost wages but will not replace your earnings completely. The goal of workers’ compensation wage replacement is supplemental income until you return to work.
Workers’ compensation also covers your medical care provided that the care is reasonable and necessary for the injury or illness. This includes doctor visits, lab testing, imaging and similar costs.
Workers’ compensation covered $8.6 billion in wages for injured workers in 2019 in addition to the necessary medical costs. Understanding the process and when to expect your benefits helps you prepare for the road ahead.