Injured Trucker Deals With Reality of Workers Comp

Michigan workers comp attorney shows how seasonal workers find their wage loss benefits stopped without notice.

The Lansing State Journal recently published an article about a truck driver who found his workers comp benefits disputed by Auto Owners Insurance. Wage payments were stopped because he was considered a seasonal employee and he should expect to be laid off during the winter.

It does not matter that his work injury prevents him from performing other jobs. Including the jobs he usually does during the off season. His injury also prevents him from collecting unemployment because he is not able to work.

This article is important because it shows the real struggles of Michigan citizens. Politicians and appellate courts often lose sight of the people that their decisions affect.

Agency reaction

Jack Nolish, Deputy Director of Michigan’s Workers Compensation Agency, says insurers sometimes argue, that certain workers — such as athletes, teachers, and landscapers — are due wage compensation only for the months they normally work.

Nolish says this a “very grey area” and suggested that someone in this position hire an attorney. The dispute would have to be resolved with an administrative hearing.

Seasonal employment

Questions about payment of wage loss benefits are becoming much more common. Some Michigan courts have found that a seasonal worker is not entitled to any lost wages during the off season.

Other Michigan courts have ruled that benefits should be paid if an injured employee could link his or her wage loss to a work injury both during and after the season.

If this happens to you

Auto Owners Insurance has a 56.2% dispute rate according to the 2011 Notice of Dispute Report published by the State of Michigan. A large percentage of these denials are never even challenged in court.

Insurers try to save money on workers comp claims. This comes at your expense. Don’t become just another statistic.

Call (855) 221-2667 to speak with one of our Michigan workers comp attorneys.  We offer free advice and do not charge a fee unless you are successful with your case.

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 comp benefits and never charges a fee to evaluate a case.

Related information:

Our list of Michigan’s Worst Workers Compensation Insurance Companies – 2012 Edition


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