Workers’ compensation is a no-fault insurance system put in place to provide coverage for lost wages due to an injury that happened while at work. The system can also provide payment for medical expenses associated with the work-related injury. In some instances, an injured worker may also be able to receive vocational rehabilitation to help them get back to work.
In Massachusetts, a worker must be classified as an “employee” in order to be eligible to receive these benefits under a workers’ compensation claim. With so many companies hiring workers on a “contract basis” in recent years, the line between employee and independent contractor has become somewhat blurred. It is important to understand your status as an employee or an independent contractor as it effects your ability to receive compensation if you are injured at work in Massachusetts. An experienced Attleboro workers’ compensation lawyer can help you understand your rights and get you the compensation you are entitled to.
How Does Massachusetts Define “Employee?”
In Massachusetts, you must be an employee to receive workers’ compensation benefits. This classification can sometimes be complex, especially under circumstances where it would make sense for the worker to believe there is an employment relationship.
Many companies, such as Lyft and Uber to name a few, have had legal disputes about how they classify their drivers. Many of these disputes arise because the line between employee and independent contractor is not always clear. Massachusetts takes a multi-factor approach in determining whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. Under this approach, factors such as the type of work being done, the location where the work is done, and how the worker is paid are all taken into account. Another important factor considered is how much control the business exercises over the worker. In general, the more control a company has over the actions of the worker, the more likely it is that the worker is an employee.
What if My Workers’ Compensation Claim is Denied?
You have the right to appeal a denial of your workers’ compensation claim. In Massachusetts, you can file an appeal with the Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA), which oversees the workers’ compensation system. The DIA is responsible for resolving disputes over whether workers’ compensation benefits should be granted. Click here for more information on how to contact the DIA. Depending on the facts of your case, the appeals process can sometimes be complex, especially if there is a dispute as to your classification as an employee or independent contractor. It can be a huge advantage to have an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer on your side. In fact, hiring a lawyer can lead to larger workers’ compensation settlements.
Contact an Experienced Attleboro Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
If you have been injured while at work, you may be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits for your lost wages, medical bills, and in some cases vocational rehabilitation. We work with experienced workers’ compensation lawyers who do not charge legal fees unless you receive an award or settlement. For a free (no obligation) case evaluation, call us today at 1-508-223-1133 or toll free at 1-800-992-6878. You may also fill out our contact form online.