If you have been injured on the job, you deserve justice under the compensation law. Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance providing wage replacement and medical benefits to employees injured in the course of employment in exchange for mandatory relinquishment of the employee’s right to sue his or her employer for the tort of negligence. While various plans differ, provision can be made for weekly payments in place of wages, compensation for past and future economic loss, reimbursement or payment of medical and like expenses, and benefits payable to the dependents of workers killed during employment. In layman's term, compensation law protects the workers.
Below are the types of compensation for workers:
Special Compensatory Damages
Special damages compensate for monetary expenses incurred because of an injury. They are unique to the individual victim and vary significantly from one party to the next. An award of special damages should make a victim whole for expenses incurred or for money lost due to the incident or accident that caused their injuries.
Special damages cover any expense or loss related to an injury, and there is no limit to the types of special damage claims that can be made, or to the amount an injured party can claim. Some of the more common types of special damages are:
• loss of earnings
• loss of future earnings
• medical bills
• cost of future medical care
• household expenses
• costs associated with cancelled trips or altered plans
General damages (or non-pecuniary damages) are called “general” because they cannot be assessed exactly. Such damages include losses suffered include pain, suffering, disfigurement, loss of enjoyment of life and loss of amenities. These damages are often the largest component in a personal injury settlement.
In determining fair compensation related to the particular circumstances of a case, the factors considered include as your age, the nature of the injury, the severity and duration of the pain, the level of the disability and the loss of lifestyle or impairment of life. Beyond these general damages, special damages may also be claimed.
Punitive damages are only awarded to an injured plaintiff when the wrongful behavior of the defendant was despicable or reprehensible. A common scenario where punitive damages are awarded arises when a defendant is found guilty of wanton or malicious acts or of fraud. These acts might include aggravated battery, sexual assault, or fraudulent behavior that causes widespread financial harm. Occasionally, in high-profile injury cases such as those involving defective products or health risks linked with prescription drugs, juries will award punitive damages against product manufacturers and other defendants who have "deep pockets."
Replacement Value of Lost Personal Property
If, for example, you were injured in a car accident, and your vehicle was totaled, you are entitled to the cost of the replacement of your vehicles. Similarly, if your car contained a set of golf clubs, and those golf clubs were destroyed in the accident, you are entitled to recover the cost of replacing the golf clubs.
Wrongful Death Damages
A wrongful death claim provides damages for surviving family and loved ones. The most common wrongful death damages include:
• funeral and burial expenses
• cost of pre-death medical care
• emotional distress of surviving family and loved ones
• loss of financial contribution
• loss of services and support
• loss of companionship and consortium
If you are unable to work for a limited period or indefinitely as a result of the injuries you sustained from the accident, compensation for your resulting income loss is available, including loss of future income for your loss of earning capacity. Although, for motor vehicle accidents, you may be eligible for income replacement through your automobile insurer, your income loss could still be potentially high as the required statutory accident benefit payments for income loss are extremely low.
Medical and Rehabilitation Expenses
Medical expenses and/or rehabilitation costs are found in just about every personal injury case. You may need prescription medications, physiotherapy, massage and/or chiropractic treatment, psychologist services, and possibly attendant care services. You may also need future rehabilitation, so both past and future costs are considered in your final settlement.