Q: When does payment of workers’ comp benefits begin following an injury?

  • A:Benefit payments should start a short time after the workers’ comp insurer receives notice of your claim, investigates and determines you’re eligible.

Q: Are injured employees always entitled to vocational rehabilitation?

  • A:It depends on the law in your state. “Rehab” isn’t required in all cases. It’s where you receive training or education to help you perform your former job or prepare for a new one. Vocational rehab takes your medical restrictions into account.

Q: Is there an appeal process if I’m not satisfied with the decision in my case?

  • A:Generally, both the employee and the employer and its insurer can seek an appeal, which is usually heard by the state’s high court. Rules for appeals vary by state, and help from a workers’ comp attorney will be needed.

Q: Are any non-medical expenses related to my injury covered, such as travel to and from the doctor?

  • A:Yes, such expenses are generally covered. You may have expenses for travel, prescriptions and supplies, which may be covered under your state’s laws.

Q: Does workers’ comp law or the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) cover my time off from work due to my injury?

  • A:The Family Medical Leave Act may apply to leave for your work-related injury if you had in-patient or continuing medical treatment. The FMLA provides up to 12 weeks of leave; note it may not be paid time off. Your employer can tell you if your workers’ comp leave is deducted from your FMLA allotment of leave time, and whether you’ll be paid.

Q: Am I required to go to vocational rehab?

  • A:You might be required to attend a vocational rehab program. You may lose your temporary total disability benefits (TTD) if you don’t go, and it may be needed if your employer doesn’t have a job geared to your medical restrictions.

Q: Are workers’ comp benefits taxed?

  • A:Benefit payments aren’t taxed because they aren’t considered earned income under tax laws.

Q: Is there interest or a penalty added to my benefits if the workers’ comp carrier doesn’t have a good reason for a delay in my payment?

  • A:It’s possible penalties will apply, but the delay has to be on purpose or for no reason at all, and not just a simple error. Your