Workers’ Compensation Laws in California
Injured workers are entitled to certain benefits and protections under California’s workers’ compensation laws, but workers’ compensation insurers and employers aren’t always quick to provide these benefits. That’s why it is so important for workers who are hurt on the job to know what they’re entitled to receive under the law after an injury. You’ll find a summary below of some of the most important laws covering California workers’ compensation benefits. Contact an Arcadia workers’ comp lawyer with any questions you may have after a workplace injury in Southern California.
California Workers’ Compensation Laws
Division 4 of the California Labor Code is home to the state’s laws governing workers’ compensation. The laws are extensive, and the average injured worker doesn’t need to read through or understand all of them, but having a basic understanding of the law can help you ensure your rights are protected. Read on to learn more about California’s laws on workers’ compensation, and contact an experienced attorney to learn more about your rights after a workplace accident.
- Who is covered by the law? Labor Code sections 3300 through 3371.1 lay out who is entitled to workers’ compensation benefits by defining key terms such as “employer” and “employee” as used in the law. “Employer” is defined, in part, as “Every person including any public service corporation, which has any natural person in service.” “Employee” is defined in part as “every person in the service of an employer under any appointment or contract of hire or apprenticeship, express or implied, oral or written, whether lawfully or unlawfully employed.”
- This section of the Labor Code also describes situations where workers’ compensation benefits aren’t available, such as when a worker is doing a job as part of a court-mandated service project; where the worker is a spouse, child, or parent of the employer; or certain types of volunteers.
- What injuries are covered? Labor Code sections 3600 through 3605 explain when an injury is covered by the workers’ compensation law and reasons why an injury might be excluded from coverage. Section 3600 (a) explains that any injury suffered by an employee that was “arising out of and in the course of the employment” even if the employee was negligent (i.e., careless) when the injury happened, will be covered.
- However, injuries may not be covered in the same way if the worker was intoxicated, the injury was intentionally self-inflicted, or another exclusion applies.
- What benefits are provided under the law? Labor Code sections 4451 through 4459 detail how disability benefits are calculated. Sections 4600 through 4615 define what types of medical benefits workers will be entitled to receive and how employers shall cover these costs.
- Sections 4650 through 4820 describe the different types of benefit payments available under the law and when they will be owed to a worker.
- How are settlements handled? In sections 4900 through 5106, the Labor Code also includes restrictions on how settled claims can be paid and how payments to reimburse the worker’s attorneys and doctors should be made.
For skilled and dedicated legal help after an on-the-job injury in California, contact the Arcadia workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of Dulio R. Chavez II and Associates for a free consultation at 626-357-3303.