A severe injury or a degenerative condition that occurs at or because of one’s work, is something that few people want to think about until an injury has already occurred. This can often leave the injured worker and his or family worried, anxious, and searching for answers regarding whether workers’ compensation benefits are available and, if so, how much they can expect to receive. While considerations of money may seem out of place following a serious injury, it is essential to prepare and arrange one’s finances to cope with the reduction in the household income.
In these considerations seem overwhelming in the aftermath of a serious accident, you are not alone. For more than 20 years, Ken Kieklak has served and fought on behalf of hard-working Arkansans who have suffered a workplace injury. Ken can explain the process and fight for benefits on your behalf if they are denied. Furthermore he can help with technical matters like petitioning for a change in physicians and other matters. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, call us at (479) 316-0438 today.
Who is in Charge of Workers’ Comp in Benton County?
The Arkansas Workers Compensation Commission (AWCC) is the state agency charged with running and enforcing all aspects of workers’ compensation in Arkansas. The AWCC handles all compensation claims and can hear appeals or requests from the employee. The AWCC will also inquire when it cannot verify the insurance coverage of a business. If the business fails to reply to written communications, the agency may conduct an on-site inspection. Businesses that fail to comply with AWCC requests can face penalties and lose protections afforded under Arkansas’ workers’ compensation statute.
Are All Workers in Arkansas Covered by Workers’ Comp?
While nearly all workers in Arkansas are covered by the workers’ compensation plan, there are some gaps in the coverage. Under Arkansas state law, most employers with three or greater employees must carry workers’ compensation insurance. However, even certain employers with less than three employees must still carry coverage if they are subject to an exception. Covered employers must purchase coverage or receive approval from the AWCC to be self-insured. Exceptions to the mandatory coverage rule includes railroad workers and others who receive workers’ compensation benefits through the federal government.
What Kind of Benefits Can a Workers’ Compensation Beneficiary Receive?
Qualified workers can receive coverage benefits that includes all of their medical expenses. Covered expenses can include hospital fees, doctor’s bills, medication, corrective medical devices like a brace, or assistive medical devices like crutches or a walker. If the worker requires physical therapy or other types of rehabilitative treatment, these expenses are also likely to be covered.
While all approved benefits will be covered, people can end up in difficult situations if they seek treatment in a non-emergency situation without first seeking approval. If possible, approval should always be secured first, but the nature of medical events may make this impossible. If you sought treatment in an emergency situation but the insurance company refuses to provide coverage, Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law can fight for you.
Aside from payments for medical expenses, workers’ compensation can also provide benefits payments for lost wages. However, an injured worker is not eligible for benefits immediately. But, on the eight day the worker becomes eligible for payments. However, payments for lost wages will not occur under the total duration of disability has reached 14 days.
How Can I Apply for Workers’ Compensation in Benton County?
Most claims for workers’ compensation in Arkansas proceed routinely through the employer and the AWCC has no reason to become involved. However in instances where the worker fails to report the injury, fails to understand or follow instructions, or where other complications arise, it may be necessary to arrange for a mediation to be administered by the AWCC. If the mediation is not effective in bridging the gap, the next step for most workers is to file Form AR-C Claim for Compensation. However, timing is essential as the claim must be filed within two years of the injury.
Put Benton County Workers’ Compensation Attorney Ken Kieklak’s Experience to Work for You
For more than 20 years Ken Kieklak has fought on behalf on injured workers throughout northwest Arkansas. To schedule a free and confidential initial consultation, call (479) 316-0438 or contact us online.