Work Injury Costs: The Big Lie About Who Pays

Michigan workers compensation lawyer explains how employers and insurance companies shift the costs of work place injuries to taxpayers, employees, families, and private health insurance.

Futurity.org reports on a study published by the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine that found cost shifting leads to artificially low workers compensation premiums.

Almost 80 percent of these costs are paid by employer-provided health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and other disability funds, employees, and other payers.

“Workers’ injuries and illnesses cost much more than what current workers’ compensation payments suggest, and the resulting low premiums provide little incentive for companies to promote workplace safety.”

How taxpayers get stuck with the bill

Workers compensation is a give and take between employee and employer interests. Employees gave up the right to sue in tort as a tradeoff for what are essentially no-fault benefits. Access to medical care and wage replacement being the most important.

The problem is when employers and insurance companies deny legitimate claims for no good reason. This happens more than people realize. See our blog post about the insurance companies with the highest percentage of disputed claims.

People who are injured at work do not just disappear when their workers compensation claims are denied. They seek medical treatment through private health insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid. They also collect welfare, food stamps, and apply for Social Security disability benefits. The end result is that the responsible employer or insurance company pays nothing while others get stuck with the bill.

What this means for your workers compensation claim in Michigan

Employers and insurance companies must be forced to live up to their legal obligations. This includes paying enough in premiums to make the workers compensation system viable. Shifting the cost of injured workers to other payers must end.

To speak with an experienced workers compensation lawyer in Michigan, call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation. We will make sure that your legal rights are protected and that you receive the correct benefits under the law.

Alex Berman is the founder of Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers. He’s been representing injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years.  Alex has helped countless people obtain workers compensation benefits and never charges a fee to evaluate a case.

Related information:

Injured at work? Advice from a Michigan workers comp lawyer

How a workers compensation attorney can help you

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by danielmoyle.

06/01/2012
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