A work injury can cause a significant strain on employees and their families—both emotionally and financially. In addition to addressing physical pain, caretaking needs, and the disruption to daily life, many families find themselves under considerable financial stress. Missed work and lost wages, compounded by arriving medical bills, contribute to increasing worries about money. Even with weekly lost wage reimbursement from workers’ compensation, injured workers and their families often feel they must take care with their income and pay particular attention to their expenses. One often overlooked expense is the cost of traveling to and from appointments for care related to the work injury. The Iowa workers’ compensation system does acknowledge this hardship, and it is possible to obtain compensation for this expense.
Iowa law requires the workers’ compensation program to cover all “reasonable and necessary” expenses related to a work injury. This includes mileage reimbursement when traveling by personal car. Currently, injured workers can obtain .535 cents per mile. While it may seem like a small amount, it can add up quickly with frequent appointments and distance.
If you do not own your own car, and you travel to appointments, it is also possible to obtain compensation to cover those and other costs. Injured workers can be compensated for:
Iowa insurance companies are required to pay these expenses, but it is common for them to attempt to ignore this duty. As a result, it is important to keep track of all the expenses related to the treatment of a work injury, including:
In some cases, it is necessary to provide proof of expenses, and it is best to have as many records as possible. These expenses can quickly add up and can contribute to a difficult financial picture.
Even if you did not know about the mileage reimbursement possibility or if you have not kept detailed records, it may still be possible to obtain compensation. Call the experienced workers’ compensation attorneys at Pothitakis Law Firm to learn more about your options, or take a moment to fill out the contact form on this page to discuss your case with a dedicated member of our legal team.