Michigan Workers Compensation Laws
When people think of Michigan, they probably think of Detroit. As Michiganders know, keeping Motor City running takes a lot of workers. And whether you’re working the auto assembly line, a construction site, or the grill at a restaurant, workplace injuries can happen anywhere. When they do, having a competent attorney with a record of excellence is key to ensuring you can heal with dignity. Here’s what you should know about Michigan workers’ compensation laws.
What Is Workers’ Compensation?
In Michigan, nearly all employers are required to have a form of workers’ compensation insurance or must be granted self-insured status by the state. When you are injured on the job, you must notify your employer immediately. During the first 28 days of treatment, your employer has the right to choose your doctor. You should not receive any bill for treatment or copay related to workplace trauma. Your injury must “arise out of and in the course of employment,” and thus you do not need to assign fault for it.
What Are Disability Benefits?
If you need to take time off of work due to a workplace injury, you may be eligible for disability benefits such as:
- Temporary Total Disability: Temporary total disability (TTD) covers 80% of the after-tax wages you were earning at the time of the injury up to a maximum amount equal to 90% of the state’s average weekly wage. TTD does not pay for recovery times lasting less than a week. TTD payments will begin on the eighth day, and if the recovery lasts longer than 14 days, the first week is paid for. Benefits continue until one of the following occurs:
- You can return to work.
- You have skills that could transition to other work.
- You do not search for work, per your doctor’s restrictions.
- Your doctor determined that your condition will not improve further (known as maximum medical improvement, or MMI).
- The time allowed for TTD per the Michigan schedule of injuries expires.
- Permanent Total Disability: In Michigan, you are considered permanently and totally disabled if you have lost two limbs, have complete vision loss, have permanent paralysis of two limbs, or have a permanent and disabling mental illness. Permanent total disability (PTD) covers 80% of the injured worker’s after-tax wage, subject to a minimum of 25% of the state average weekly wage and a maximum of 90%. There is no limit on the number of payments.
What Else Is Covered?
Under Michigan law, workers are eligible for additional benefits, including:
- Medical care such as doctors’ visits, prescription drugs, medical treatments, and hospital visits
- Vocational rehabilitation if you are no longer able to fulfill the duties of your previous occupation
- Death benefits for the spouse and dependents of an employee who died due to a work-related injury
What if My Benefits Are Denied?
Michigan law provides numerous opportunities for employers and insurance companies to get out of providing you the benefits you deserve. They will often attempt to demonstrate that you are able to find work but are refusing to do so. If your benefits are denied, a Morgan & Morgan attorney can help you file the appropriate paperwork to appeal the decision of your employer’s insurance company.
Contact Morgan & Morgan
With Michigan law so stacked against injured workers, it is important that you have someone on your side who thoroughly understands the state’s workers’ compensation law and how it applies to you. Morgan & Morgan’s Michigan attorneys have recovered benefits for workers just like you. Fill out a free case evaluation to get started.