What is workers' compensation? Workers' compensation
is a "no-fault" system that protects employees injured on the job by paying
medical expenses and providing income while they are unable to work. If an
injury occurred in the course of employment, employees do not have to prove
that the employer was at fault to receive benefits and employers may not be
sued for damages due to work-related injuries and illnesses.
For most employees, state workers' compensation statutes define
the injuries covered; benefit levels; and how claims are resolved. Although
workers' compensation laws provide the exclusive remedy for job-related injury
and illnesses, employees might still be covered by the Family & Medical
Leave Act (FMLA) or the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
While workers’ compensation insurance premiums have risen, there
are cost-control measures including managed care, safety programs, investigating
and pursuing fraudulent claims, incentives for employees to return to work
quickly, and encouraging the settlement of claims.