Lots of college students have jobs these days but how many of them know how to deal with a work place injury? Do you know what to do? Personally, I didn't have the slightest idea until I had to go through it. Here's what I learned about the workers compensation process in New Jersey.
When you get hurt at work, tell your employer as soon as possible. All business owners should have insurance to cover you so if you are hurt, let them know so they can get you medical care. If you try to get medical on your own you will have to pay out of pocket (which is extremely expensive because sadly NJ isn’t Canada). Your employer should then contact their insurance company as soon as possible.
If you have to miss work because of the injury, you're entitled to 70% of your wages. If you can't do certain tasks at your job, your employer has to put you on modified duty. If that isn't available, you have to miss work but are still entitled to 70% of your wages.
You really have to advocate for yourself. As sad as it is, everything is a business and no one wants to spend money. If you need medical care or help at work you have to continually advocate for yourself or you may not get all the help you need.
Navigating this by yourself can be difficult. Luckily many attorneys have free consultations and will happily answer all of your questions regardless of whether you want to pursue a settlement or not.
Working as a college student can be rough and, being relatively new to the work force as many are, it’s easy to be taken advantage of. Always be sure to educate yourself on your rights so you can ensure you are treated fairly.