Unless you are one of the fortunate few, you cannot afford to pay your bills for long without a paycheck. That makes the idea of getting hurt at work terrifying. Not only might you have no money coming in, you might also have medical expenses to cover. 

Fortunately, that is where workers’ compensation comes in. Connecticut law provides a guarantee of medical care and monetary relief for people injured or killed at work. If hired in Connecticut, even if you were working out of state, or were partially at fault for the injury, you may be eligible for benefits. 

What expenses does workers’ compensation cover? 

The Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Act requires employers to cover survivors benefits for employees killed at work. Employers must also provide a weekly income, with amounts determined by whether the inability to work is total or only partial. Employees have a right to medical care, and may receive reimbursement for expenses incurred going to and from doctors’ appointments. 

Do I have to use my employer’s doctor? 

You have the right to choose your own medical providers. When considering a doctor, make sure it is someone you trust to have your health, not the employer’s bottom line, as his or her primary concern. Your choice may be limited if your employer has a pre-approved plan that has only certain doctors “in network.” Be aware also, that once you choose a doctor, you may not have the ability to freely switch to a different doctor without showing a valid reason. 

Who provides the money? 

Employers have a choice in how they set up their workers’ compensation plans. Some employers self-insure. If the employer self-insures, you will get benefits from the employer. Other employers buy insurance to cover potential expenses. For these employees, benefits would come from the insurer. 

Losing the ability to work and draw a paycheck is scary, but the Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Act helps protect your interests, both medically and financially.