Workers’ Compensation

Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Compensation

  • Although there are some exceptions, a South Carolina employer who regularly employs four (4) or more workers is required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance coverage.
  • You should report any work-related injury to the employer right away but, the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation law says that it must be reported within ninety (90) days of the date of the injury.
  • The South Carolina Workers’ Compensation claim for benefits must be filed within two (2) years of the date of the injury.
  • Workers’ Compensation weekly benefits do not “kick in” until you have been out of work for seven (7) days. This includes weekends, holidays or other days that you are normally scheduled to be off of work.
  • The insurance company does not have to start sending you checks until you have been out for fourteen (14) days.
  • Once you are out over fourteen (14) days, however, the insurance company should go back and pay you for the first seven (7) days.
  • Workers’ Compensation benefits are paid at a weekly rate that is equal to 66.6% (2/3’s) of the worker’s gross average weekly wages for the four (4) quarters before the date of injury.
  • The employer and insurance company are paying for your medical treatment so you generally have to go to their doctors or other medical providers, at least at first.
  • You should be reimbursed for your “out of pocket” expenses, such as prescriptions and mileage to and from authorized medical treatment. Just make sure you have a doctor’s prescription or written order for the non-prescription items.
  • You have a right to ask the employer and insurance company to send you to another doctor for a second opinion or treatment. If they don’t, you can ask for a Hearing to get the Workers’ Compensation Commissioner to order them to do it, if it is justified.
  • You can see your own doctor at your own expense, but you run the risk that the insurance company might not pay your Workers’ Compensation benefits if your chosen doctor takes you out of work.
  • Your employer does not have to keep your job open for you while you are out on Workers’ Compensation.
  • It is against South Carolina law for an employer to fire someone because they filed a Workers’ Compensation claim or because they testified in a case.
  • Cases cannot be settled or closed without the knowledge and approval of the Workers’ Compensation Commission. Do not accept an insurance company’s explanation that your claim is “closed.”