What are the eligibility criteria for workers’ compensation in South Carolina? The state allows most employees to file for workers’ comp if they sustain an injury while working. However, exceptions exist that can prevent you from securing damages.
You can review specific eligibility criteria with our legal team at Miller, Dawson, Sigal & Ward, LLC. A South Carolina workers’ compensation lawyer can step in to assist you after an accident and help you understand if your injuries make you eligible to file a workers’ comp claim.
Who Is Eligible for Workers’ Compensation in South Carolina?
South Carolina uses specific regulations to determine who can apply for workers’ comp. Generally. Generally, you have a chance to file for workers’ comp benefits if, at the time of your accident:
- You were employed
- Your employer had a legal obligation to carry workers’ comp insurance
- You experienced your injury or illness while on-the-job
Additionally, you must report your illness or injury and file a workers’ comp claim within a set period of time to qualify for benefits. Our team goes over these eligibility requirements in more detail now.
What Employees Qualify for Workers’ Comp in South Carolina?
Generally, full-time and part-time employees qualify for workers’ comp benefits in South Carolina. Additionally, individuals who work for family have a chance to file a claim after an accident. However, some employees do not qualify, including:
- Domestic workers
- Farm or agricultural workers
- Seasonal employees
- Casual employees
- Workers placed with a company by a temp agency
If you have questions about your employment status, you can call a workers’ comp attorney for direct answers.
What Employers Must Have Workers’ Comp Insurance in SC?
The South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission (SCWCC) requires companies to carry these benefits if they have four or more employees. Both full and part-time employees count towards this limit.
The requirement applies if the company has at least $3,000 in annual payroll expenses. However, some exemptions to this requirement exist. For example, companies may not have to cover:
- Railroad employees
- Agricultural employees
- Licensed real estate agents
A law firm can assess your company to determine if it must offer workers’ comp insurance.
What Qualifies as an On-the-Job Injury or Illness?
Work-related injuries occur while you’re doing something to benefit your employer or your business. Some injuries are clearly work-related. For example, you may have a relatively simple workers’ comp claim if:
- You broke a bone while falling off a ladder at work
- You developed a repetitive strain injury while performing work tasks
- You became ill after exposure to a dangerous chemical at work
However, workers’ comp cases are not always straightforward. For example, some employers may claim you were not engaged in work-related activities if your injury occurred at a social event hosted by your job or on your lunch break.
Some employers also argue that you sustained your injury while impaired by alcohol or breaking the rules with co-workers. In these cases, it may prove more challenging to secure workers’ comp benefits.
How Do You Report an On-the-Job Injury or Illness in South Carolina?
Part of the eligibility criteria for workers’ compensation in South Carolina requires employees to report their illness or injury within a set amount of time. Generally, you should report the incident as quickly as possible.
Make sure you report the injury or illness to someone with supervisory responsibilities. For example, you could inform your:
- Workplace nurse
The Workers’ Comp Commission may not consider a report to another employee a valid notification.
Legally, you may have up to 90 days to report your injury after an incident. You may need this extra time to report the injury or illness if you require emergency medical care. However, the professionals recommend you update your employer as quickly as possible.
How Long Do You Have to Report Your Injury to the WCC?
You must do more than report your injury to your employer to secure workers’ comp benefits in South Carolina. You have two years of the date of your accident to file a claim with the WCC.
In order to file a claim, you must complete a Form 50 and submit your form to the Commission. You do not have to pay for the form. In fact, you can download it for free from the WCC website.
What Benefits Does Workers’ Comp Offer in South Carolina?
If you meet the eligibility criteria for workers’ compensation in South Carolina, you may receive benefits to cover your losses. In many cases, the WCC provides funds to cover your medical expenses and wages lost during your disability.
You may also receive compensation if a workplace injury leaves you with a permanent disability. However, the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act does not cover pain and suffering resulting from an on-the-job accident or injury.
Generally, you cannot sue your employer after a workplace injury in South Carolina to seek additional damages. However, you may have other legal options if your employer fires you after you file a workers’ comp claim.
How Long Do Workers’ Comp Benefits Last?
In many cases, you receive workers’ comp benefits until you recover enough to return to your job. However, some injuries prevent you from returning to work, in which case you may qualify for permanent disability.
Speak to Us About Eligibility for Workers’ Comp in South Carolina
What are the eligibility criteria for workers’ compensation in South Carolina? Generally, you must sustain an injury while employed to receive these benefits. You can learn more about the requirements with our Miller, Dawson, Sigal & Ward, LLC team.
Call us for help handling a workers’ comp claim or complete our online contact form.