Workers’ Compensation For the Trucking Industry: A Brief Guide

Trucking Industry

Being a truck driver is more than driving a truck. It’s knowing how to drive a vehicle that large to deliver goods from Point A to Point B safely. After all, operating something in that size is bound to bring its own challenges.

Accidents can happen just about anywhere at any time, and car accidents continue to pile in numbers each month. Given how trucks are double the size of a car, it only makes sense for its risk to double in size. As such, there’s always a chance your business might get compromised if your transportation got involved in a truck accident. 

But it’s safe to say how the employee directly affected by this event might not come out unscathed. Since treating the damages caused by the accident would come out of your pocket, you might want to consider claiming workers’ compensation.


What Is Workers’ Compensation?

Workers’ compensation is meant to provide for any damage inflicted on the employee, regardless of whether they’re liable for the accident or not. To discuss it even further, this claim protects you financially by answering the following:

  • Medical costs
  • Missed wages
  • Funeral expenses

With these benefits protecting the employee, they and the employer won’t be subjected to potential bankruptcy depending on how severe the damage is. And knowing how dangerous it is to be involved in an automobile accident—much less a truck accident—should be enough for you to know how severe it could impact your life moving forward.


Qualifications For Workers’ Compensation

Although working in a truck industry may not be the same as an office job, claiming workers’ compensation isn’t that different. If you visit and other specialists, the same qualifications must be met to guarantee you’ll receive your workers’ compensation:

  • Must have no relation to foreign substances
  • Must not be self-inflicted
  • Must happen within the job

However, one topic worth getting debated pertains to independent contractors and employees. Since not all truck drivers aren’t employed by a company, employers or insurance companies might claim they’re not suitable to receive workers’ compensation. As long as a truck driver is hired to do a job and their injuries occurred during the duration of their contract, this makes them qualified to be a beneficiary for workers’ compensation.


How to File a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Much like how one handles other personal injury claims, the same basics apply to workers’ compensation.


1. Contact Help

The injured employee must contact their employer first because the accident happened during working hours (or contract). By contacting them, they’re promptly alerted of what happened so they can make the necessary preparations for your workers’ compensation while calling for medical help to attend to you.


2. Gather Proof

Although you have workers’ compensation protecting you financially, that doesn’t mean you should allow the liability to go scot-free, especially if you’re confident you’re not at fault. That’s when a lawyer comes in. With their guidance, they can advise you on the next steps you could take given your situation.


3. Prepare For Settlement

Depending on who’s the liability, you can either settle a decision with the liability or your employer. You’re supposed to reach an agreement with them. After all, there’s only so much your workers’ compensation can shoulder, especially if your condition takes a long time to recover or whether it’s permanent. It’s only understandable to discuss the settlement between the liability with the help of your lawyer to ensure the benefits you’re receiving are in your favor.

As for the employer, this should already be a given since you got injured on the job. And although workers’ compensation covers medical bills, there are still different categories of medical benefits which hones into what health condition you’ve received from the accident such as:

  • Temporary total disability benefits
  • Temporary partial disability benefits
  • Permanent partial disability benefits
  • Permanent total disability benefits


4. Decide the Outcome

Depending on what sort of disability you’ve received from the accident, you and your employer must come up with a decision. After all, as mentioned earlier, it’s rare for victims of car accidents to come out of one unscathed. Therefore, your disability could impact whether or not you’re capable of going to work.


Why You Need Workers’ Compensation In Trucking Industry

Getting involved in an accident is an expensive endeavor, whether you’re the liability or not. And with a job as high-stakes as truck driving, accidents may very well be knocking on your door anytime. But having workers’ compensation could help ease your worries somewhat since it protects you from going bankrupt as you recover.