In this article, we’ll discuss Iowa worker’s compensation law, the types of injuries covered and who is eligible, the types of benefits provided, and who pays the benefits and chooses the medical care. Finally, we’ll discuss deadlines associated with filing a claim and how to file a workers’ compensation claim in Iowa
There is a good chance that if you work for a company in Iowa that it has some form of workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation law in Iowa requires most employers to provide benefits to workers’ in the event they become injured and/or disabled on the job or in some way over the course of their employment.
The definition of “injury” under Iowa workers’ compensation law is fairly broad and includes almost any health impairment not considered the normal wear and tear experienced by the body over time.
Certain diseases and hearing loss attributed to employment may also fall under workers’ compensation. For example, cancer or epilepsy due to exposure to harmful chemicals over time or in a single instance would likely be covered under Iowa workers’ compensation law.
Typically, pre-existing conditions are not covered by worker’s compensation, unless it is an acute aggravation of the pre-existing condition with disabling symptoms.
If you are an employee, working under a contract of hire or whose employment is principally localized in Iowa you are more than likely eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. There are some situations where coverage is limited or non-existent, but these are usually isolated cases and more information is available through the Iowa Division of Workers’ Compensation. Independent contractors, partners, and other limited liability employees are normally not covered under workers’ compensation and must purchase their own insurance.
There are a number of different disability benefits that we’ll list below with a brief explanation. Because of all the different types of benefits, and because each workers’ compensation situation is unique it is best to discuss your situation with a qualified attorney.
If an employer purchases insurance through an insurance company, the insurance company will pay the worker’s compensation benefits. If the employer is self-insured the employer will pay the workers’ compensation benefits.
Generally, the employer has the right to choose who provides medical care in a workers’ compensation case. The employer can also opt to let the employee seek out their own medical care, but still oversee the process and possibly deny as they see fit. If an employee is dissatisfied with the employer’s choice for the medical care he or she may ask for another provider. If an employee is dissatisfied with a provider’s disability rating he or she may seek a second opinion from another provider.
Workers’ Compensation cases can be time-consuming, frustrating and costly during a time when you or a loved one may be in pain due to the work-related injury. Having a qualified attorney on your side can streamline the process, ease some of the responsibility, and allow the injured worker to focus on getting better.
O'Flaherty Law is happy to meet with you by phone or at our office locations in: