Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers want to wish all of our blog readers happy holidays and remind them of the challenges facing injured workers.
Many disabled workers find the holiday season the most difficult time of the year. It is hard to celebrate the holidays when you are having trouble feeding your family or when you are in jeopardy of losing your home. This happens often when individuals have their workers comp benefits cut off. It is hard enough to support a family on just 80% of pre-injury wages.
These challenges are even worse this year as House Bill 5002 has become a horrible reality. This legislation allows employers and insurance companies to unilaterally reduce wage loss benefits based upon a job they think you can perform. It does not matter whether you can find work or not.
You can always challenge an unfair decision in court but this process takes months and sometimes years on appeal. In the meantime, disabled workers find themselves in the position of having their wage loss benefits reduced or cut off completely.
We need real solutions for workers comp
Special interest groups used enormous political pressure to make House Bill 5002 happen. The idea of reducing wage loss benefits for partially disabled individuals who cannot find other employment is repugnant to public policy. This breaks the 100 year compromise between employees and employers in this state.
It is time to provide a real remedy for individuals who are unfairly treated under workers comp. If a magistrate determines that an employer or insurance company wrongfully denied benefits, penalties should be available. This will remove the incentive that employers and insurance companies have to abuse the work comp system.
Other changes to the law include a heightened evidentiary standard for individuals with degenerative arthritis. This will make claims for back and neck injuries more difficult as most people develop some arthritis as they age. Anyone who is locked out of the workers comp system should be given the right to pursue civil damages, including pain and suffering, for employer negligence.
We stand with workers who are injured on-the-job
To speak with one of our work comp lawyers in Michigan, call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation. There is no fee unless workers comp benefits are recovered for you.
– Alex Berman is the founder of Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers. Hes been representing injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Alex has helped countless people obtain workers comp benefits and never charges a fee to review a case.
Video: Injured at work? Advice from a Michigan workers comp lawyer
HB 5002 passes both State House and Senate
– Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Brian Finifter.