Missouri Workers' Compensation
Missouri workman's compensation or workers' compensation is a no-fault insurance plan for employees who have been injured in a work-related accident or who have an occupational illness. Workman's compensation includes medical benefits and wage loss compensation for employees as they attempt to recover from their work injury and return to their jobs.
Details and information for Missouri's workers compensation law is contained in Chapter 287 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri. This law outlines the rights and obligations of employers and employees who are injured at work and seeking workman's compensation.
Missouri workers' compensation is administered by the Missouri Division of Workers' Compensation. Missouri Workers' Compensation Division strives to ensure that an injured worker receives all of the Missouri workman's comp benefits that they are entitled to receive under the Missouri Workers' Compensation law. Disputes or settlements may be reviewed and decided by the Division's Administrative Law Judges who has the authority to award settlements to injured workers for permanent benefits allowed by Missouri compensation law.
Hiring a Missouri Workers' Compensation Lawyer
Workers who suffer from a Missouri work injury or occupational illness and who are unable to work are entitled to compensation. Missouri work compensation lawyers generally offer a free consultation to determine if they can handle your claim.
Work comp lawyers in Missouri can help you secure your full work comp benefits and resolve your case as quickly as possible. Most workman's comp lawyers have handled a diverse case load and understand what compensation is needed for some of the most common types of work injuries including: back injury, neck injury, fibromyalgia, burns, amputation, and blindness.
Missouri workers' compensation attorneys have access to some of the top experts in various medical fields and can help you build a strong workman's compensation case.
Work Injuries Covered Under Missouri workman's Compensation
Missouri workers' compensation covers most work injuries which occur on the job. This can include work injuries caused by the careless actions of a Missouri employee. The employee must, however, be engaged in what is termed "their normal job duties" or official company business.
Work injuries may not be covered by Missouri workman's compensation under the following conditions: The employee was performing an activity expressly prohibited by company police or was against the law. The employee was injured while they were intoxicated by alcohol or drugs. The employee was driving to or from work. The employee was injured while they were intentionally trying to hurt themselves or another person. The employee was engaged in a voluntary, recreational or social activity.
Missouri work injuries or occupational illnesses which are commonly covered under Missouri workman's comp law can include: Bone fractures, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Hernia, Torn Rotator Cuff, Torn Meniscus, Bulging disc, Stroke, Concussion, Asbestosis exposure, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, General Anxiety Disorder.
Missouri Worker's Compensation Benefits
- Medical benefits - Medical benefits are provided to injured Missouri employees at no cost. Medical benefits cover all necessary and reasonable medical care associated with the work injury. This can include: doctor's visits, hospitalizations, medical supplies, laboratory services, prescribed medication and physical therapy.
Missouri employees have the authority, under Missouri workers' compensation laws, to choose the employee's treating physician. The employee can not change doctors without proper employer authorization. Talk to your employer prior seeing a physician.
- Temporary Total Disability Benefits (TTD) - Temporary and total disability benefits are paid to Missouri workers who are injured at work and who, due to their Missouri work injury, are unable to return to their job. TTD benefits 2/3 of the injured workers average weekly wages up to the maximum established by Missouri workers' compensation law.
TTD payments are limited to 400 weeks and will not begin until after a 3 day waiting period. Employees who are absent from work due to their work injury for more than 14 days may receive compensation for the first 3 days of missed work.
- Permanent Partial Disability Benefits (PPD) - Permanent partial disability benefits (PPD) may be paid to workers who have suffered a permanent and partial loss of a body part. According to Missouri statute it may be paid "in addition to compensation for temporary total disability or temporary partial disability paid in accordance with sections 287.170 and 287.180, respectively".
PPD benefit rates are based on a schedule. For instance, workers who have lost use of their arm at the elbow joint may be entitled to 210 weeks of PPD benefits. PPD compensation is 66 2/3 percent of the injured workers wage. For permanent losses which are considered "non-scheduled" the maximum period of payments is 400 weeks and the maximum payment amount is $161,864.
- Permanent Total Disability Benefits (PTD) - Permanent total disability benefits (PTD) is paid to employees who are totally and permanently disabled from a work injury and unable to work. For injuries occurring on or after August 28, 1991, according to the state's statute "the weekly compensation shall be an amount equal to sixty-six and two-thirds percent of the injured employee's average weekly earnings as of the date of the injury". The weekly compensation can not exceed 105% of the state's average weekly wage. PTD benefits may be paid for the lifetime of the injured employee.
- Vocational Rehabilitation Benefits - Vocational rehabilitation is available to injured workers who are unable to return to their previous employment due to their work injury. Vocational rehabilitation services are provided by the Missouri Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and can include: job evaluations, job training, counseling, and job modifications. The goal of vocational rehabilitation benefits is to help the worker return suitable employment as soon as possible.
- Death benefits - Death benefits are paid to the surviving dependents and spouse of a Missouri worker who dies form a work-related injury. Death benefits are paid at 66 2/3% of the deceased worker's average weekly wages for the year before the death. Death benefits can also include funeral expenses which may be paid up to the state's maximum allowable amount which is currently $5,000.