Workers' Compensation Law
Arizona Workers' Compensation Laws
Whether your job is in a Tucson retirement home or a Phoenix high-rise, you work hard to pay your bills. But spending so much time on the job leaves ample opportunity for work-related injuries and illnesses. For this reason, Arizona requires employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance which provides medical and disability benefits regardless of fault. In exchange, the employee gives up the right to sue their employer (with some exceptions). If you’ve suffered an injury at work, you should know your rights and responsibilities under Arizona workers’ compensation laws.
What Arizona Law Says About Workers’ Compensation
In Arizona, most employers must provide workers’ comp insurance to their employees, including undocumented immigrants and minors legally or illegally employed (Sec. 23-902, 23-901(6), and 23-1021). And while injuries are covered regardless of fault, certain benefits may be barred if the disability was caused by the employee’s willful misconduct (Sec. 23-901.04). Here is a breakdown of the law in Arizona:
Types of Benefits Offered:
- Medical benefits: all reasonably necessary medical expenses (Sec. 23-1062)
- Income benefits: payments equal to a percentage of average monthly wages lost as a result of temporary or permanent disability, subject to maximums and minimums. (Sec. 23-1044, 23-1045, and 23-1041)
- Death: payments equal to two-thirds of the deceased’s average monthly wage, paid to surviving dependent(s); burial expenses up to $5,000 (Sec. 23-1046)
Employer Rights and Obligations
- Employers must obtain workers’ compensation insurance for most employees (with limited exceptions) (Sec. 23-902)
- Must submit report to insurance carrier and commission within 10 days of receiving notice of employee’s injury or illness (Sec. 23-908(G))
- May designate a physician to examine the employee in order to ascertain the nature and extent of the injury or illness (Sec. 23-908(F))
- Most heart-related and mental injuries or illnesses are not covered unless certain injury or stress related to the employment was a substantial cause of the injury, illness, or death (Sec. 23-1043.01)
Read the full text of the Arizona statutes for additional details.
I Was Injured on the Job: What’s Next?
Once you discover an injury or illness, you should seek medical attention and notify your employer right away. Your employer has 10 days to submit a report to its insurance carrier and the Commission (Sec. 23-1061(E)). In addition, you must file a claim with the Commission within one year of the date of injury (Sec. 23-1061(A),(B)). Benefits begin on the eighth day after an injury; but if your disability lasts more than 14 days, then benefits for those first seven days are paid to you as well (Sec. 23-1062). If there is a problem with your claim, you can request a hearing with an administrative law judge at the Industrial Commission of Arizona (Sec. 23-941).