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Worker's Compensation

Like most states, Indiana has a private insurance worker’s compensation system, which means that employers must carry an insurance policy in order to cover liability under the worker’s compensation law. A small number of employers are “self-insured” meaning they have received special approval from the Worker’s Compensation Board to pay claims out of their own funds.

The Worker’s Compensation Board has exclusive jurisdiction to hear claims for personal injury or death by accident arising out of and in the course of employment. Worker’s compensation provided limited benefits to injured workers in the form of medical treatment, compensation for lost wages, and compensation for the loss or loss of use of parts of the body. In the case an employee dies in a workplace accident, the employee’s dependents may become eligible to collect death benefits.

When a compensable injury occurs, the employee should receive immediate medical treatment if necessary. If the employee is unable to work because of the injury, he or she is considered disabled and may receive limited wage-replacement compensation. The employee may be place on light duty or a reduced schedule, in which case partial disability payments may be provided. When the injury heals to the point that it will likely get no better and no worse, the employee may be examined to determine if there is any permanent impairment, meaning a permanent loss of a body part or function. If the injury is found to result in a permanent impairment, the employee will be compensated according to a statutory schedule.

Claims for work injuries are handled initially by the employer or its worker’s compensation insurance carrier. If disputes arise, both the employer and employee have the right to a hearing before a worker’s compensation judge.