How the Coronavirus Affects Workers Compensation Claims

The coronavirus is here and continues to spread at a rapid pace. And with this virus continually mutating, it is likely that it will be with us for some time. So, how does the coronavirus impact South Carolina’s workers compensation?

In the state of South Carolina,occupational diseases qualify for workers compensation benefits. The coronavirus qualifies when it arises out of the course of employment or under the regular working conditions of the job. But, how can it be proved that you got the coronavirus from your job? It’s like getting the flu or a cold. These illnesses can easily occur outside of your employment. According to the National Law Review, the coronavirus could be compensable if a person’s job increases the risk of contracting corona. Likely, the coronavirus will be categorized as a non-occupational disease. Employers will then have to decide whether the job contributed to contracting corona or if employment aggravated this condition. First responders and other types of healthcare workers would have a much greater chance of proving this as they interact with the public on a regular basis. This would increase their exposure of contracting the coronavirus. 

According to section 42- 11-10, benefits are not allowed for a disease that results from exposure to other employees.It also bars employees from catching a disease that is due to exposure outside of their workplace.Those workers in South Carolina who have contracted the coronavirus will have an uphill battle in getting workers compensation benefits as the law is currently written. However, medical workers, first responders and prison workers all grocery store workers may be able to prove that their condition was due to their employment.

Currently, hundreds of workers in South Carolina have filed workers compensation claims due to the coronavirus. But, all of these claims have been denied by the workers compensation provider.All of these claims will have to be litigated by the Workers Compensation Commission in the state.Possibly, employees might wind up being able to get benefits due to the coronavirus.

If you’re a worker who suspects that they contracted the coronavirus at work, it is important to let your employer know as soon as possible. As a matter of fact, you have 90 days in the state to report an illness.

If you submit a claim to your employer and it’s denied, your employer must submit a form to the Workers Compensation Commission.There are benefits that are allowed for family members.

If you are an employee in South Carolina who has contracted the coronavirus due to your employment, it is in your best interest to hire a South Carolina workers compensation attorney. Not only all worker compensation laws complex, but the coronavirus is also new to workers’ compensation claims. With a workers compensation attorney in your corner, you have a much better chance of successfully getting benefits. Not only can a workers compensation attorney in South Carolina help you navigate the claim process, they can keep you updated on decisions made by the states Workers Compensation Commission regarding the coronavirus. Got a workers compensation claim due to corona? Get a South Carolina workers compensation attorney today.