During this health crisis, many people in the community have questions and concerns about their safety and legal rights. COVID-19 has presented issues and questions that bring much uncertainty.
Although in recent weeks much of the population has been an isolation, and in some cases conducting their work from home, there are many essential employees still reporting to work. A lot of these essential job functions are positions in which there is a higher risk of being exposed to the virus. Whether you work in a grocery store or on the front lines at the hospital, the odds of you having person-to-person contact is much higher. Workers in these environments wonder what their legal rights may be for getting sick with coronavirus due to their workplace setting.
Claimants are usually covered by Workers’ Compensation for any injuries or illnesses sustained during their work hours. With COVID-19, the largest obstacle for workers looking for coverage is going to be the ability to prove they contracted the disease while on the job. With an illness as elusive as this one, it may be hard to pinpoint exactly when a worker was infected, therefore making it hard to prove that they did in fact contract the virus while at work.
If the claimant can prove by 51% that the illness was due to exposure at work, they would be provided all Workers’ Compensation benefits such as lost wages and paid medical care. It is still yet unknown if there will be any future side effects from coronavirus, but if medical monitoring is necessary, that would be another benefit your attorney would pursue.
In the coming weeks and months there will be many new developments on how to proceed with Workers’ Compensation claims due to COVID-19. As new information is made available, we will continue to update this blog so you can stay informed on your legal rights.
Written by Joel Kotler