Carter Craig, Attorneys at Law

An overview of Virginia's Workers' Compensation

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Virginia residents enjoy a wonderful quality of life and lots of good jobs. Most jobs provide a safe working environment, free of hazards. But, workplace accidents do occur. When they occur, workers' compensation can help injured employees with their financial needs.

Workers' compensation in Virginia is available for employees who suffer on-the-job injuries. The injury should be connected to some kind of job requirement. This could include toxic exposure from coal mine jobs or construction accidents. Other types of injuries that can be covered by workers' compensation include repetitive stress injuries, lung cancer if exposed to toxic chemicals at the workplace, back injury, work-related stress, etc.

Workers' compensation exists so that injured employees can receive monetary payments for their injuries without having to litigate against their employer. Most businesses must carry workers' compensation insurance. It does not matter whose fault the accident was, the employee still receives benefits. The monetary benefits that are received can cover medical expenses, lost wages, permanent injuries, and a death benefit for family members of an employee who was killed on the job. Workers' compensation benefits do not cover pain and suffering. The wage replacement is usually a third of an employee's salary, and there is typically a maximum amount.

Receiving workers' compensation benefits usually means that a person will not file a lawsuit against their employer. Nonetheless, a civil lawsuit can be filed against a third party, such as a machine manufacturer, if it is determined that the injury was caused by a defective machine, etc.

Source: VA.us, "Injured Workers", accessed on Sept. 29, 2014

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