IS MY EMPLOYER RESPONSIBLE FOR MY MEDICAL BILLS?
In the words of the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission, “Every South Carolina employer and employee, with certain…exceptions, is presumed to be covered by the State’s Workers’ Compensation Act…Employers covered by the provisions of the Act are required to maintain insurance sufficient for the payment of compensation, or they shall furnish the Commission satisfactory proof of their ability to pay…An employee may expect compensation for personal injury or death by accident arising out of and in the course of his or her employment. Workers’ compensation pays for necessary medical treatment…” (Source: www.wcc.sc.gov)
Assuming that your employment does not fall under one of the exceptions covered by state workers’ compensation laws, and assuming that your employer has maintained workers’ compensation insurance for you as required, the insurer will be responsible for your medical bills stemming from an on-the-job injury. If, on the other hand, your employer has opted to be self-insured (having furnished “satisfactory proof of their ability to pay”), then that employer will be responsible for your medical bills after a workplace accident.
The short answer, then, to the question “Is my employer responsible for my medical bills?” after a workplace accident is essentially, “Yes, if it happened on the job.” That is, unless your employment falls under an exception such as railroad employment or an employer with fewer than four employees.
A longer answer to the question may explain that some employers and some workers’ compensation insurers tend to put up roadblocks and delay or deny injured workers’ claims unfairly. If you have already gotten a taste of this type of treatment, contact an attorney.