Most people don’t realize that not all employees are covered under workers’ comp in Alexandria, Virginia. Well, let me rephrase that. Not all workers are covered under workers’ comp. The distinction lies in who is considered an employee and who is not.
For the most part, employees are covered under workers’ compensation insurance. Non-employees are not covered. This means that independent contractors, temporary employees, and consultants are not covered under workers’ comp.
There are also other groups of workers who aren’t covered. This means that, if you get hurt at work, you have to rely on other programs in order to pay your bills. Workers’ comp lawyers in Alexandria, Virginia know the law when it comes to workers’ compensation. They can answer any questions you may have.
Here is a brief summary of how workers’ compensation works for employees versus non-employees.
Who is Not Covered Under Workman’s Comp?
Most employees are covered under workers' comp. However, there are groups of people who are not covered. Here is a list of the types of workers who aren’t covered by workers’ comp in Virginia:
- Business owners – If you own your business, or are a partner in a business, you’re generally not covered under workers’ comp. You can talk to your insurance company and see if you can pay extra premiums in order to be covered.
- Volunteers – For the most part, volunteers aren’t covered under workers’ comp because they aren’t employees. The exception to this rule is for volunteer firefighters and first responders. These people are usually covered by workers’ comp.
- Independent contractors – It’s important that employers distinguish between independent contractors and employees. Employees are covered under the company’s workers’ comp insurance. Contractors are not. You have to be careful because some employers will classify you as an independent contractor in order to avoid paying your claim. If this happens to you, contact a workers’ comp lawyer in Alexandria right away.
- Federal employees, Longshoremen, and Railroad workers – It’s not that these employees aren’t covered at all. They’re just covered under different programs. They usually include medical care and replacement wages – some even include pain and suffering.
If you’ve been denied workers’ comp benefits but feel you should have been approved, you’ll need to file an appeal. An experienced Alexandria workers’ compensation attorney can help you do this.
What Do Independent Contractors Do if They Get Hurt on the Job?
So, if independent contractors aren’t covered under workers’ comp, what do they do when they get hurt? Just because you’re not technically an employee doesn’t mean you won’t get hurt on the job. Independent contractors can suffer the same types of injuries as other employees.
Most independent contractors work in non-physical positions. If you think back to the independent contractors you know, they tend to be the following types of workers:
- IT experts
- Training personnel
- Redundancy specialists
- Marketing people
Although they tend to do non-physical jobs, they can still suffer work-related injuries. When this happens, they won’t be able to do their jobs. They’ll have no choice but to file for disability.
The problem is, it’s harder to qualify for disability than it is workers’ compensation. In order to file for disability, you may want to call an experienced workers’ comp lawyer in Alexandria.
How Does Disability Work?
If your injuries aren’t covered by workers’ comp, you may have to file for disability. In order to do this, you have to be out of work for at least a week or longer. You can’t even apply for disability until you’ve missed a significant amount of time from work.
Generally, you have to meet the following requirements to collect disability:
- You’ve worked for jobs that paid into social security disability
- You’re going to be out of work for at least one year
- You have to meet the definition of disabled under the law
- You must not be able to work at all given your medical condition
Your lawyer can help you fill out the application for disability. Just keep in mind – over 70% of all disability claims are denied on the first request. You may have to file an appeal if you have any chance of getting approved.
Contact a Workers’ Comp Attorney in Alexandria, Virginia
If you get hurt at work but don’t qualify for workers’ compensation, call a workers’ comp lawyer in Alexandria, Virginia. You need to call and schedule your free initial consultation. Sit down with an experienced lawyer who can review your case. He can answer any questions you may have. He can also let you know what your case may be worth.
You need to find some way to pay your bills while you recover from your work injuries. Call and speak with an experienced lawyer today.