Does it matter who is at fault for a workplace injury?

Getting injured on the job can leave you with many questions. You may wonder how you’ll support your family, how long it will take to recover, and, of course, if you qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.

Some manual labor workers in Alabama believe they must prove fault for their workplace injury if they want to file a workers’ compensation claim successfully. However, this is often far from the case.

Alabama has a no-fault system

Alabama considers many workplace injuries to be “no-fault” injuries. That means, in most cases, you can receive workers’ compensation benefits regardless of who is responsible for your on-the-job injury.

This system can help you get the compensation you need from your employer and ensure you have a safety net while recovering. That way, you can focus on healing at home instead of worrying about your monthly finances.

Workers’ compensation typically covers your injury-related medical costs and can provide partial wage replacement while you’re away from work. Wage replacement can cover up to two-thirds of your average weekly pay. However, there are limits on the weekly compensation you can get. In Alabama, workers can receive a maximum payment of $832 per week and a minimum payment of $229 per week. These amounts typically depend on how much a worker earns.

The no-fault system can come with exceptions

While Alabama utilizes a no-fault system for workplace injuries, there are exceptions to the rule. For example, you may not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits if:

  • You were under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • You participated in willful misconduct, such as rowdiness or horseplay
  • You intended to hurt yourself or someone else
  • You ignored state or federal safety rules
  • You failed to or willfully refused to use appropriate safety equipment

There is a timeframe for filing a claim

Alabama’s no-fault system can make filing your workers’ compensation claim easier. At the same time, the state’s statute of limitations for filing these claims is two years. Addressing your injury within that timeframe and providing proper documentation can help you get your claim approved. That way, you can get the coverage you need to heal, pay your bills and provide for your family.

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