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Determining Eligibility For Workers’ Compensation Benefits

December 12, 2017By Niko Pothitakis

Iowa Workers’ Compensation Benefits require employers to provide their injured employees with three types of benefits: medical care, temporary total disability benefits and permanency benefits. These benefits are available to employees who are injured on the job or during performance of work-related activities. Determining eligibility in some cases may be complicated, especially if the employer or their insurance carrier is attempting to deny the claim. If you were injured at work, you have rights; however, you must first understand how those rights work and whether or not you are eligible for benefits.

What Injuries are Covered Under Iowa Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

The Workers’ Compensation Act is part of the Iowa Code. It states that employees injured at work are entitled to certain benefits for those injuries. Occupational-related diseases are also covered under this act as well as hearing loss. The benefits are payable regardless of fault, meaning even if the employee caused their injury, they may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Iowa law also requires most employers to carry this insurance. The law does not give a specific list of injuries and is purposely broad so that they can include any health impairment related to the job, as long as it is not the normal building up or tearing down of bodily tissues due to age.

Eligibility: Who Can Collect?

Almost all employees in the state of Iowa who have suffered a work-related injury, illness or a case of hearing loss can receive benefits. However, there are some classifications of employees that are exempt, including:

  • Domestic workers
  • Casual employees who work less than 12 consecutive months and earn less than $1500
  • Agricultural employees with employers who have a payroll of less than $2500 in a year
  • The spouse, parents, children and siblings of an employer
  • Those engaging in exchange labor for agricultural work
  • The president, vice president, secretary and treasurer of a family farm as well as their families
  • Police officers and firefighters who are entitled to different pension fund benefits created by the Iowa Code chapters 410 and 411
  • Members of a limited liability company
  • Employees who are entitled to benefits under any other rule of liability that was established by the Congress of the United States
  • Freelance workers and independent contractors

When the Injury Didn’t Occur at Work

Sometimes injuries are work-related, but do not occur on the employer’s worksite. In these cases, the employee is still entitled to workers’ compensation benefits as long as they can prove the injury was due to their employment. For example, an employee making deliveries or headed to a business meeting could still receive workers’ compensation benefits if they are injured in a car accident.

To Help Determine Your Eligibility, Contact Pothitakis Law Group Today

If you have been injured at work, determining eligibility for worker’s compensation benefits can be difficult. Contact Pothitakis Law Group today for a workers’ compensation consultation. Call us at 888-459-7613 or fill out an online contact form to have one of our attorneys reach out.