How to avoid employee compensation claims in your business

Charleville Chamber of Commerce

Worker’s compensation insurance is beneficial for both the business and the employee. This is because while it denies the employee the right to sue the employer in the case of work related injury, illness or disability caused by the employer’s negligence, it entitles the employees to compensation in case of such injuries regardless of who is at fault. The amount to be received by an individual is not determined by the cause of the accident whether or not it was the employee’s own fault. The right to worker’s compensation is, however, lost if the injury is caused as a result of intoxication or where there is intention to cause injury.

The need to settle

The payment of worker’s compensation may lead to some disputes. In this case the claim is not paid till the dispute is solved. In case of a dispute, the parties may need to seek the aid of the country’s worker’s compensation board, and more often there will be the need to settle. While settlement may be a good idea for a business as it saves on time and prevents the severing of the worker- employer relationship, there are a few things that one needs to know before agreeing to settle.

What happens in case of a settlement?

In most situations, when the worker’s compensation case is on-going the employee receives weekly benefits for the injury. When the employee agrees to settle however, he or she cannot receive these weekly benefits.

Depending on the country, the medical payments may or may not continue. Some countries require the insurer to pay the medical benefits even after the settlement of the case. In most cases after a settlement however, the insurer is never willing to continue with the medical payments. This may lead to the need for a claim to be filed with the board, forcing the insurer to make the medical payments.

Considerations to make before settling

Settling may at times seem to be the best decision for a business but before you agree to settle there are a few considerations that one needs to make.

First the settlement has to be approved by the country’s Worker’s Compensation Agency. Once the proposal to settle is submitted to the agency, a hearing is held and the proposal is reviewed. A judge has to be satisfied that the agreement to settle was voluntary and that the terms of the settlement are favourable to the employee otherwise the proposal is denied.

In determining the amount of an employee’s compensation settlement, the amount of workers’ compensation benefits that one might be entitled to in the future and the likelihood of actually receiving those benefits are taken into consideration.

How to ensure you will not be embroiled in a compensation case:

Beside the lucky few business owners, most have experienced some sort of disgruntled employee. Every day there are employees taking advantage of the workers compensation system and filing fraudulent claims that cause hours upon hours of headaches for employers. Even when employees become ex-employees there is plenty of room for them to come after your business. People are constantly filing suits against employers for reasons such as: wrongful termination, hostile work environment and many other violations… the list could go on forever.

So how do you stop people from having such a sue-happy attitude? Well, the short of it is that you cannot change the percentage of the population that are going to look for any reason to try to get into to your pockets.

So, there’s a solution to this costly problem? Absolutely! There is a solution that every business owner can use… stop the problem before it ever starts; to be clearer and stop using vague phrases, do your research on the people you are interviewing. Thinking back to the many interviews you have done over the years, certainly there is a time that you could have pressed a little harder on a sequence of questions to get to the answer that could of saved you lots of cash.

Here is a list of suggestions that you can use that will help reduce those headaches you don’t have time for:

• Reference checks with former employers and personal references
•Drug tests for employees.
• Employment applications
• Interview question’s that put them in situations they will encounter in the everyday workplace
• Evaluation of their tenure with former employers and reason for ending relationship with that business.
• Most importantly: not hiring who will work for the least amount. Everyone has heard the phrase “you get what you pay for” well this could not be more accurate with employees. The additional amount you pay for an employee could save you in the long run with all the potential legal action/ fraudulent claims that can happen with a cut-rate employee.

To you, your business is like a child, something you have worked extremely hard to develop and that you care about the success of greatly. To a great employee that you screened properly they will respect this notion. To an employee that was hired because they were willing to take €2 less an hour, chances are they could care less.
For any legal matters you may have get in contact with: Charleville.

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