Nurses devote their lives to healing the sick and injured. However, the healthcare industry can be very dangerous for nurses, who are at high risk for work-related injuries and illnesses. Whether a nurse works at a hospital, a clinic, a pediatrician’s office, a dental practice, or an urgent care center, he or she is at constant risk of sustaining an injury while moving a patient, being assaulted by patients, slipping on fluids, being struck by medical equipment, being injured while lifting or assisting a patient, or sustaining other types of injuries that are common in the nursing industry.
If you or someone you love is a nurse who was injured at work, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, which can help to pay for your medical bills while remunerating you for lost earnings. Led by founding attorney Martha Ramsay, Board Certified Workers’ Compensation Specialist, the Charlotte workers’ compensation lawyers of the Ramsay Law Firm have more than 20 years of experience helping healthcare workers fight for benefits. Whether you need help filing a workers’ compensation claim, wish to appeal a claim that has already been denied, or are concerned about your benefits being suspended or cut off, our knowledgeable team of attorneys can provide personalized guidance and aggressive representation.
Our legal team handles nursing workers’ compensation claims throughout the Charlotte metropolitan area. If you were injured at your healthcare job in Charlotte, call our law offices right away at (704) 376-1616 for a free legal consultation about how we can help.
Can Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) and Restorative Nurse Assistants (LPNs) Get Workers’ Compensation for Hospital Injuries?
For the vast majority of nurses who are licensed to practice in North Carolina, the answer to this question is yes. Under the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act, virtually all businesses with at least three employees are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance, including corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs), and other types of business entities. While several occupations are excluded from the Act, nurses and other healthcare workers are generally covered. This includes:
- Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs)
- Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists
- Clinical Nurse Specialists
- Critical Care Nurses
- General Nurse Practitioners
- Gerontological Nurse Practitioners
- Informatics Nurses
- Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs)
- Medical-Surgical Nurses
- Neonatal Nurses
- Nursing Administrators
- Pain Management Nurses
- Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners
- Restorative Nurse Assistants (RNAs)
Benefits may be available for a wide array of work-related accidents and disabilities, ranging from accidental falls in hospital corridors, to infections resulting from contact with patients, hospital garments, or contaminated medical equipment, to injuries caused by strenuous physical work like lifting, which is frequently required of CNAs when moving patients within a facility.
Though ill and injured nurses are normally entitled to workers’ compensation, several facts must be true in order for a claimant to receive benefits under the Act. To receive workers’ comp for a nursing injury or hospital accident, you must have either:
- Been injured by accident or due to a specific trauma.
- Suffered an occupational disease.
When Do Workers’ Comp Benefits Start?
After sustaining a workplace injury, you have up to two years to file a workers’ compensation claim with the North Carolina Industrial Commission, which is the organization responsible for overseeing the claims process in North Carolina. This two-year deadline is called the “statute of limitations.” If you fail to file a claim before the statute of limitations runs out of time, or “expires,” you will not be able to receive workers’ compensation benefits as your claim will be barred. Limited exceptions to this rule may apply, but it is best not to rely upon an exception.
While the statute of limitations allows up to two years to file a workers’ comp claim, you will likely want to file your claim as soon as possible. Though you should prioritize getting immediate care, it is crucial to report your injury to your employer as soon as it is possible to do so safely. You should report the injury within 30 days of your accident, both orally and in writing. Your employer will then report your injury to their workers’ compensation insurance company.
If your claim is accepted, you should begin receiving medical benefits almost immediately. However, you will not receive compensation for the first seven days until you have been disabled for 21 days. Once you have been disabled for 21 days, you should receive payment for the first seven days of your disability. If your payments are late or fail to arrive, you should immediately contact our nursing workers’ comp lawyers for assistance. Benefits are paid on a weekly basis.
If the insurance company denies your claim, you may challenge or “appeal” the decision against you. To appeal successfully, be prepared to present compelling, detailed medical evidence that clearly shows why the denial was improper. Our denied workers’ compensation claim attorneys can guide you through all levels of the process to maximize the odds of getting you approved for benefits.
Charlotte, NC Workers’ Compensation Attorneys for Nurses
Our workers’ compensation law firm is proud to give a voice to the victims of workplace accidents –especially when those victims have devoted their careers to caring for others. Serving the Charlotte area, our nursing workers’ compensation attorneys handle a wide spectrum of healthcare worker injury claims, including claims based on:
- Accidental Falls
- Assault Injuries and Workplace Violence
- Back and Spinal Cord Injuries (SCI)
- Bone Fractures
- Burn Injuries
- Chemical Exposure
- Foot and Ankle Injuries
- Hand and Wrist Injuries
- Head and Facial Injuries
- Hearing Loss
- Infectious Diseases
- Permanent Scarring and Disfigurement
- Repetitive Strain Injuries
- Sprain Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
- Vision Loss
If you suffered from these or other common nursing injuries, our legal team can work to ensure that your claim is prepared properly, that your legal rights are respected by your employer, and that you receive the maximum benefits possible. For a free consultation about workers’ comp for nurses in North Carolina, call the Ramsay Law Firm at (704) 376-1616 today.