From Abbott to Zunkerville, Texas is chock-full of honest and hardworking folks. You get up each morning ready to do what needs to get done to provide for your family. Unfortunately, whether you wash cars or wait tables at the local diner, the Lone Star State is not the most ideal location to suffer a workplace injury. If you are hurt at work, your employer generally has the option of whether to compensate you for lost wages and medical costs under Texas workers’ compensation laws.
First and foremost, Texas law only requires public employers to carry workers’ comp insurance. If your employer has chosen not to carry workers’ comp insurance, they must notify you of their lack of coverage when you are hired. However, you may file a personal injury claim if your employer lacks coverage and you suffer a workplace injury (instead of filing a workers’ comp claim).
As noted above, Texas employers are not required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. But those that do are required to cover undocumented immigrants (Sec. 401.011) and most domestic workers. Here is a breakdown of the law in Texas.
Types of Benefits Offered:
Employer Rights and Obligations:
Read the full text of Texas statutes for additional details.
To receive workers’ comp benefits, you must notify your employer within 30 days of the date of your injury or the date you first realized that your injury or illness might be work-related. Even if you are already getting benefits from your employer, you must also file a completed claim form (TWCC41) to keep getting benefits. You must file this form within 1 year of either the date you got hurt or the date you realized the reason you were sick was because of your job.
Beginning the second you get hurt, your employer must pay for all reasonable health care expenses. Once your injury has kept you from working for seven days, your employer’s workers’ comp will pay you wage replacement benefits beginning on the eighth day.
If your disability keeps you from working for more than two weeks, you will retroactively receive wage replacement benefits for the first week of your disability. If your disability keeps you from returning to your old job even after your recovery, Texas offers vocational rehabilitation to help you find a new job. Finally, if your loved one died due to an accident at work or an occupational disease, Texas offers death benefits including $10,000 in burial expenses.
This article is intended to be helpful and informative. But even common legal matters can become complex and stressful. A qualified workers’ compensation lawyer can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a local workers’ compensation attorney to discuss your specific legal situation.