When you suffer an injury or illness and are unable to work, you may be eligible to receive financial support from a few different sources, but primarily workers’ compensation and state disability insurance. Both disability insurance and workers’ compensation provide benefits to individuals who have suffered an injury or illness and are unable to work. But, it’s very important that you understand the distinction between the two systems.
The Difference Between Workers’ Compensation & Disability Insurance
Workers’ compensation benefits are available to workers who suffer a work-related injury or illness in lieu of them being able to file a lawsuit against their employer. New Jersey, like most other states, requires employers to purchase workers’ compensation insurance to cover any work-related injury or illness their employees may suffer.
On the other hand, state disability insurance provides benefits to individuals who suffer injuries or illnesses that are not work-related and are unable work. As a result, disability insurance covers a wider range of illnesses and injuries and is available to you in many circumstances when workers’ compensation is not
So, the primary difference between workers’ compensation and state disability insurance is that workers’ compensation covers you for injuries and illness for which your employer would be financially liable, while state disability insurance covers you for injuries and illness for which your employer is not financially liable.
That being said, you may be entitled to receive state disability benefits while also receiving workers’ compensation benefits if the benefits available to from the state are higher than your workers’ compensation benefits.
Moreover, if your workers’ compensation claim is disputed, you may be entitled to receive state disability benefits until your workers’ compensation claim is accepted. Afterwards, the state can be paid back the money it dispersed to you while you were resolving your workers’ compensation dispute.
A Workers’ Compensation Claim or Disability Claim?
Sometimes, when a worker suffers a work-related injury or illness, his or her employer will suggest that they file a claim under disability insurance instead of workers’ compensation. This is because employers don’t want to pay workers’ compensation benefits due to the fact that it can make their premiums go up and can be very expensive for the business.
As a result, an injured employee may be pressured by his or her employer’s HR department to file an injury claim under state disability insurance because it’s cheaper for the company. However, this is not a good option for the injured worker. Disability insurance is specifically designed to cover you for non-work related disabilities and the benefits are not as good as those available to you under a workers’ compensation claim.
Under workers’ compensation, you are entitled to receive wage replacement benefits until you return to full duty at work, or until you reach Maximum Medical Improvement. Afterwards, you will be entitled to receive permanent disability benefits and lifelong medical care. But, state disability insurance only pays you benefits for up to 26 weeks per period of disability.
So, if you are injured on the job and are being pushed by your employer to file a claim under state disability insurance instead of workers’ compensation, you need to contact an attorney immediately so that you can make workers’ compensation pay for everything that you are entitled to.
Contact Workman’s Compensation for New Jersey
For more information regarding the difference between disability insurance and workers’ compensation, you should consult with an experienced New Jersey workers’ compensation attorney.
Workman’s Compensation for New Jersey can match you with a qualified worker’ compensation attorney in your area who can answer any questions you have regarding your workers’ compensation claim and ensure that you are receiving the benefits you are entitled to receive. Call us today at 609-412-4722, or contact us online for a free consultation.