Worker’s compensation benefits come in many different forms and fashions. After all, there are many different stages to recovering from an injury, and getting back on your feet. You have initial recovery, rehabilitation, and getting back to work if you can. When getting back to work, it might be difficult, or impossible, to resume the exact position you help before. For this reason, reduced earnings benefits are a huge relief for injured workers that are getting back to it. But how do they work?
Reduced Earnings Benefits: Understanding Worker’s Comp
You’ll eventually return to work after an accident. When you do, it might take time to get back to your old work duties. Or, you might be confined to light duty return. At this time, you might find that the position you’re holding doesn’t pay quite as much as what you had before. When you face this issue, reduced earnings benefits can come in and compensate for that difference in wage. By introducing this amount, you will be able to maintain your lifestyle, get back to work comfortably, and return to your way of life.
The biggest thing that reduced earnings benefits do for you is provide a peace of mind. An injured worker can come back into the workplace and not worry about their ability to hit the ground running. These benefits can be very helpful in the difficult time following an accident. While this time can be painful and there can be many stressors, money does not need to be one of them. Therefore, these benefits can make for a less stressful transition. Without having to worry about a loss of wages, you can return to work, find your footing once again, and work your way back to full capacity.
Every injured worker’s journey is a little bit different, and their way back to work is no small feat. By providing these benefits, every worker has the chance to come back to work when the time is right, and move forward.
When it comes to worker’s comp, there are all kinds of reasons, and instances, that might have lead to your receiving benefits. From a fall, a hot pan, a broken platform, and even a work party? When you go to work events, and receive an injury, you might come to realize quickly that you’ve fallen into a gray area (no pun intended). After all, you were there because of work, maybe even in the office building— and you got hurt. So what’s the word on work parties and injury? Do I still receive benefits?
Work Events and Injury: Do I Still Receive Benefits?
Well, it depends on a few different things. Most importantly, the reason why you’re there. The first question you need to ask yourself is: do you have to go? Does your boss extend this invitation as an optional event, or does all staff have to make an appearance? This question will become the cornerstone on whether or not you can pursue a claim.
Furthermore, were you drinking at the time of the accident?
If you were able to answer ‘yes’ to the question of required attendance, the next question is about your alcohol intake. Just like with any worker’s comp claim, alcohol can undoubtedly get in the way of your receiving benefits. However, it’s still not impossible to receive those benefits, especially if alcohol was a part of the celebration that was supplied to you.
We see it all the time…
Someone is at a work event, having a good ol’ time mingling with coworkers, friends, and family. However, maybe you take a tumble down the stairs, cut your hand on a broken glass, or fall by the bathroom. When you receive these injuries, you’re likely hoping to have it covered in some capacity. After all, you wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the work event, and your requested (or required) attendance.
As we’ve said, this is absolutely a gray area of some sort. For this reason, if you face injury at one of your work events, reach out to an attorney! By speaking with a professional, you can decide what is the smartest path to take— or if you even have a case. A consultation is free, and it can tell you a lot about your potential case.
Vocational rehabilitation is a form of worker’s comp. In short, this set of big words just means getting back into the work field. And that is what this form of worker’s comp does. When someone must stop working due to injury, this benefit helps them get back into the work field when the time comes.
Vocational Rehabilitation: How Does It Work
When you suffer from an injury at work, it is possible you will not be able to return to that same job. Whether your injury keeps you from preforming that job or the job is no longer available, you may not return. However, you will most likely need to work again. And in that case, that means you will need to find a new job. But sometimes that can be tough.
Therefore, worker’s comp offers vocational rehabilitation benefits. Under these benefits you can receive training for a new job. In the case that you want to change fields completely, these benefits also tuition reimbursement. By that standard, you may decide to go back to school and see a different area of work. In which case, these benefits will cover the cost of school.
Furthermore, you can still receive wage loss benefits during this time as well. So while you are receiving job training or going to school, benefits can also cover a portion of your previous wages.
How Long Does It Last?
These worker’s comp benefits can last for up to 2 years. Since transitioning back to work can be hard, these benefits help make the transition easier. Under these benefits, you can take the time you need to find a suitable new job. In addition, you can be sure that you prepare yourself either through training or education. Furthermore, these benefits take away the worry of finding a new job too quickly without feeling you can or want to do it.
In short, vocational rehab is a means of getting you back into a suitable position after a work injury. These benefits can come in the form of wages while you’re facing new job training, tuition reimbursement, and other mean that can allow for you to make the same amount of money, if not more, than you were making before the injury. Facing a work injury is difficult enough without the worry of making ends meet when it’s all said and done. For this very reason, vocational rehabilitation benefits exist.
Disability discrimination can appear in a few different forms. Maybe you’re being treated differently in the workplace after an incident, maybe you didn’t receive the job due to your disability, or you’re being passed up for promotions and raises. No matter the form or fashion, disability discrimination is a large problem within our workforce, and it’s one that can face legal ramifications. If you suspect that you’re the subject of this type of discrimination, reach out to an attorney, and the ADA, today. But first, you might want to know what it looks like…
Disability Discrimination: Am I a Victim?
Before we dive into the specifics of disability discrimination, we must first explore what discrimination is. Discrimination, by definition, is receiving different treatment than people around you, due to a handicap of some sort.. To put it simply, others may deny access in some way due to their view of your ability. This treatment can be harmful to you and the workplace.
How does it hinder my employment?
Disability discrimination may appear during the hiring process, or even after a work injury. You might have the same qualification, and able to complete the necessary work duties. However, you notice that you didn’t receive the same benefit, or second interview. Furthermore, you might notice employers asking unnecessary questions about your condition, or questioning your ability to perform work functions.
On the flip side, say you faced a work injury earlier this year. You are healing nicely, and back to work now. However, you notice that you are no longer up for a raise, promotions, or opportunity that you were before. If you feel that you’re missing out within your current workplace, or in others, it can be enraging to say the least. You know that you are capable of working hard, and in the same settings as your coworkers. So, you might be wondering what you can do about it? You want to receive equal opportunity, and be treated as a capable member of the team. But, that’s just not happening at the moment.
What can I do to change this?
Start by explaining your rights to the employer. The ADA is alive an well, and they are here to directly assist in situations such as these. Explain that you have certain rights, and your abilities should allow for you to be in the running for any promotion, career, or pay increase that your fellow employees have.
If you have taken this step with your employer, or a potential employer, and they still are not giving you equal access— file an internal complaint. The benefits of filing an internal complaint, is that it gives the employer a chance to see that you’re very serious. Not to mention, you also give them a chance to correct the issue. Instead of taking them to court straight off the bat, it gives them a chance to adjust their thinking and make the right choice.
If neither of these tactics work, it’s time to file a suit against the employer. You didn’t want to take this route. But, it has become the only chance you have to get your point across, and be treated fairly. You’ll want to file your suit with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), or your state’s agency. Then, you’ll want to find a lawyer to take on your case. From there, the EEOC and your attorney will help you move forward in the best way possible.
Every case is different, but discrimination is not something to overlook. You, just like every other citizen, deserve the chance to work hard, and advance your career. For this reason, the ADA has put protections in place.
If you live in North or South Carolina, chances are you’ve heard of reckless driving before. Maybe you have a friends who has a charge of reckless driving, maybe you have, or you’ve just heard it on the news. No matter your relationship to the term, it’s important that drivers understand what this charge is, and how to avoid it.
Reckless Driving in NC: Understanding the Law
In North Carolina, there is a statute for reckless driving. Under the statute, reckless driving charges can be made when… (in words that are easier to understand):
- Someone driving on a highway, or ‘public vehicular area’ (PVA) with disregard and a lack of care towards the rights and safety of others.
- Driving in a PVA without caution, and at a speed that endangers others, or the proper of others.
If you are driving a commercial vehicle that needs permitting to be on the highway, the driver is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor in these cases:
- Driving carelessly, or in disregard of the rights and safety of others.
- Without caution, or in a manner that could endanger others or their property.
Someone may face conviction for reckless driving if they’re driving with neglect towards others, or their property. Reckless driving is typical when you’re traveling at high speed, and can often be cited like a speeding ticket. Of course, this applies to your every day passenger car drivers. But, when it comes to a commercial vehicle? The issue becomes a bit more serious. After all, your vehicle has the potential to cause a lot more damage.
A piece of terminology used in these statutes is: ‘willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others’. The court understands that not every single instance of speeding has this. In most cases, it comes down to an inquiry into the facts of the case, and whether you meet certain standards.
Finally, to avoid this type of ticket, it mostly comes down to making sure that you observe the speed limits, drive with caution, and do your part to keep the roadway safe. Most people will speed at some point in their adult life, that’s just common sense. However, reckless driving can be particularly damaging to your driving record, and the wellbeing of yourself and others.