A Quick Guide to Workers’ Compensation in Texas
Texas Workers’ Compensation Laws
All Texas workers’ compensation laws are located under the Texas Labor Codes. These laws provide specific qualifying factors, as well as guidelines for employers that will be discussed in this article.
If an employer has workers’ compensation insurance in Texas, they employee who has become injured will have to attend a physical from the employer’s recommended doctor and undergo an examination. If the doctor sees evidence that the injury was directly sustained because of duties in the workplace, the doctor will then have to fill out specific forms, and the employee must follow specific procedures.
Texas workers’ compensation laws require a person to take reasonable steps for rehabilitation under their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance in Texas. The employee must take reasonable steps to get better within a certain period of time, and in some cases, meet with a doctor under the employer’s workers’ compensation insurance in Texas or regular checkups.
Who is covered under Texas Workers’ Compensation Laws?
Only some employers are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance in Texas. Many larger employers carry the insurance regardless if the business requires the insurance or not. Some small employers don’t carry workers’ compensation insurance in Texas, but any smart employer will usually try to protect themselves.
Under Texas workers’ compensation laws, the following employers are required to carry insurance:
1. Public employers such as cities, state or county agencies, the University of Texas, Texas A&M, and Texas Tech University facilities
2. Building and construction contractors for public employees
3. Motorbus companies
4. People who provide transportation or public highways
5. Liquid propane gas and compressed natural gas dealers
6. Employers of inmates in work furlough programs
Texas workers’ compensation laws provide specific instructions for employers that do not need to offer workers’ compensation insurance in Texas. These workers are listed below:
1. Workers on offshore drilling rigs and ships, and those involved in loading and unloading sea vessels (these workers are usually covered under the Jones Act)
2. Domestic or household workers
3. Family members who work on their farms or ranches
Benefits under Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Texas
If a worker qualifies for compensation under Texas workers’ compensation laws, they or their family may be able to receive compensation for lost income, medical treatment, a death, or even funeral costs.
If the worker suffers a disability that limits their ability to work for the rest of their life, they may be compensated according to what work they were once able to do compared to what level of work they can now do. The compensation is meant to decrease the difference between former and current wage earnings.
For all medical expenses, the employers’ workers’ compensation insurance in Texas will pay the medical facility or professional directly who treats the injured person. The employee has the ability to pick the doctor, but the doctor must be listed and approved by the Commission.
If death benefits are offered, Texas workers’ compensation laws allow a family to receive a portion of possible income that a family member would have made in their lifetime.