People who are hurt or become ill on the job in South Carolina often face a number of challenges, including paying for medical treatment and supporting themselves and their families while they are unable to work.
South Carolina law requires that most employers in S.C. have workers’ compensation insurance to pay for medical care, a portion of lost wages and other benefits for full-time and part-time employees injured on the job. The South Carolina Code of Laws states generally that businesses with four or more workers in South Carolina must obtain workers’ compensation insurance to protect employees.
If you suffered serious injuries or your loved one was killed on the job in South Carolina, it is important to understand your legal rights and the workers’ comp benefits available to you. If your employer or the workers’ comp administrator disputes your right to benefits, you do not have to try to handle the issue on your own. South Carolina’s workers’ compensation system has complicated rules and appeal procedures. A knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorney at Joye Law Firm may be able to help you pursue the benefits afforded to injured employees. Joye Law Firm has proudly represented injured workers in South Carolina for more than 50 years. For help pursuing the benefits you deserve, call us at (888) 324-3100 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.
What are South Carolina Workers’ Comp Benefits?
After an injury on the job, you are entitled to coverage of all necessary medical treatment. Workers’ compensation covers the costs of surgery, hospitalization, medical supplies, prosthetic devices, and prescriptions. You are required to receive medical treatment from a doctor selected by the employer or the insurance administrator.
Workers who sustain severe injuries on the job may have to miss weeks or months of work or be unable to return to work. An injured worker may qualify for temporary compensation to recover part of their lost wages and receive permanent disability benefits if he or she sustained permanent injury. The wage replacement benefit is calculated at two-thirds of a worker’s average weekly wage for the four quarters prior to a person’s injury and is capped at a maximum benefit. If a person was working two or more jobs at the time of an accident, those multiple sets of wages can be included as part of the average weekly wage and compensation rate.
There is a seven-day waiting period before workers’ compensation benefits can be paid, but an individual will be compensated for the original seven days if he or she is out of work for more than 14 days. The payments will be sent directly to the injured worker. When a doctor clears a patient to return to work, worker’s compensation will be stopped. The individual will have to request a hearing if they disagree and cannot perform the work assigned to them.
If a worker’s injuries cause a permanent disability, the worker may qualify for permanent disability benefits, which can last up to 500 weeks.
If a Worker Passes Away, What Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits are Available?
When a worker sustains fatal injuries in an accident on the job, the deceased worker’s spouse, children, and other dependents can be eligible to recover death benefits or dependency benefits. South Carolina Code § 42-9-110 establishes that a surviving spouse or a child shall be presumed to be wholly dependent for support on the deceased employee.
Death benefits are two-thirds of a deceased worker’s average weekly wage, and they may be paid for up to 500 weeks. Workers’ compensation in South Carolina can also pay up to $12,000 for funeral and burial benefits.
South Carolina Code § 42-9-290 states that a child 19 years of age or older enrolled as a full-time student in an accredited educational institution and any dependent child who is mentally or physically incapable of self-support (regardless of age) may be entitled to death benefits.