2024 What Does Workers’ Comp Cover in California?

Barry Law Group
2024 What Does Workers’ Comp Cover in California?

No one expects to be injured while at work, but it does happen. Knowing as much as possible about your workers’ compensation claim is beneficial to your future plans as you recover from your injury. To learn more about what you might be entitled to under workers’ compensation, contact a workers’ compensation lawyer in Encino, CA.

The Key Parts of Workers’ Compensation

There are 5 elements of a workers’ compensation claim. Each employee may qualify for different types of benefits, including:

  1. Medical Benefits: This includes reimbursement for costs like doctor visits, tests, and any other procedures that an employee goes through due to a workplace injury.
  2. Temporary Disability: If the injuries that an employee incurred result in them being unable to perform essential job duties, then they are sometimes entitled to temporary disability. This payment is two-thirds of their original salary for up to one year, depending on the scope of the injury and how quickly the employee recovers.
  3. Permanent Disability: If it is determined that an employee cannot return to their original job due to their injury, they might qualify for permanent disability benefits.
  4. Supplemental Job Displacement Benefits: If an employee can be retrained and placed into a different career or type of work, workers’ compensation might cover the costs of training or developing skills to be able to work in a new field.
  5. Death Benefits: If the employee died as a result of their injury, their loved ones might be entitled to compensation for funeral expenses, medical benefits, and supplemental income to replace their former income.

Different employees qualify for different benefits, depending on their situation. In addition, independent contractors are not considered employees, so they are usually not eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.

To start the workers’ compensation claim process, an employee must file a claim soon after they report their injury to their employee. There is a strict time limit for employees to file workers’ compensation claims, so the sooner they begin the filing process, the better the outcome.

How Much Is the Average Workers’ Compensation Claim in California?

Calculating an employee’s specific benefits can be difficult without additional details, but there are some criteria you can use to determine what your settlement might be:

  • Averages: The average workers’ compensation claim settlement in California is between $2,000 and $20,000.
  • Limits: This settlement is often broken down into weekly payments. California law currently dictates that employees receive as little as $230 per week or as much as $1,539 per week on their workers’ compensation claims.
  • Injury Scope: The intensity of the injury will dictate how much an employee receives in a settlement. If an injury causes an employee to be unable to perform essential job duties or perform basic tasks, then they will likely receive a higher settlement amount.
  • Medical Costs: Different injuries have different medical costs associated with them. The higher the cost of treatment and recovery, the more you might be eligible for.
  • Income: The government also takes your previous income into account when determining workers’ compensation settlements. The settlement amount is usually around two-thirds of what your weekly salary or wage would be.

One other thing to look into is employer-sponsored health benefits. Since there is no law requiring employers to continue your health benefits while on workers’ compensation, some employees might lose access to their healthcare benefits. Any injured employee should investigate this issue.

An employer is also required to make reasonable accommodations for a disabled employee under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). Reasonable accommodation is a broad term, but it includes employers changing the duties of your job or reassigning you to a different job based on your physical abilities.

How Long Does It Take to Receive Benefits?

Most employees must attend a court hearing to ensure that they understand the terms of their workers’ compensation agreement. This hearing and subsequent benefit payout typically happen within 30 days. There are some exceptions if the employer’s insurance company does not want to pay for an employee’s benefits.


Q: What Does California Workers’ Comp Cover?

A: Workers’ compensation in California includes the following five benefits:

  1. Compensation for medical care and treatment
  2. Temporary disability
  3. Permanent disability
  4. Supplemental job displacement benefits
  5. Death benefits

Most employees qualify for compensation for medical care, but qualifying for additional benefits depends on the specific situation. For more information on what you are specifically entitled to, contact a workers’ compensation attorney.

Q: What Is the 5-Year Rule for Workers’ Comp in California?

A: The 5-year rule applies to the length of time that an employee can collect disability payments in a workers’ compensation claim. An employee can collect up to 104 weeks (or roughly 2 years) worth of disability payments within a 5-year period after the injury occurred or was discovered. If the disability is a chronic long-term condition, payments can sometimes be extended for up to 240 weeks of payments within a 5-year period.

Q: Does Workers’ Comp Pay for Pain and Suffering in California?

A: Workers’ compensation does not address pain and suffering compensation. To receive compensation for pain and suffering after your workplace injury, you must file a separate personal injury claim. This claim can include expenses for losses like pain and suffering, economic damages, and costs for taking time off of work. To file a pain and suffering claim, contact a personal injury attorney to see if that is possible in your situation.

Q: Can an Employer Fire You While on Workers’ Comp in California?

A: California is an at-will employee state, which means that employees can leave a job at any time, and employers can fire employees at any time. Although an employer cannot directly fire an employee solely for taking workers’ compensation benefits, they can still do so based on other reasons, like poor performance or financial difficulties. If you believe that your employer fired you unjustly, seeking legal counsel can help you learn what options are available to you. When you choose Barry Law Group to represent you, you’ll receive dedicated legal assistance to navigate the complexities of worker’s comp claims in California.

Let Us Help You in Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Filing a workers’ compensation claim can be a long and tedious process, especially if you are in the process of recovering from an injury. If you need assistance filing your claim or want help with understanding the benefits that might be available to you, contact Barry Law Group for personalized support for your unique situation.

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