New Senate Bill May Change Workers' Compensation Laws in Kentucky
On March 22, 2018, the Kentucky Senate passed a bill that may change the current workers’ compensation laws in the state. If passed by the House, it will be sent to Republican Governor Matt Bevin for final approval. The bill is supported by business groups, but is opposed by organized labor groups.
Understanding the Implications of the New Bill
Currently, those who suffer permanent, partial disability are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for as long as the disability lasts. In many cases, partially disabled workers are eventually able to return to the workforce. The current law ensures the benefits will be there as long as necessary.
However, the new bill puts a time limit on workers’ compensation benefits for permanent, partial disability. Lawmakers are suggesting that these benefits should only last for 15 years. This means workers who suffer permanent, partial disability will only be able to receive benefits for 15 years. In order to renew payments, they will need to fill out a recertification form and get it approved.
The Dispute Regarding This New Bill
Proponents of the bill say this will provide a straightforward process for workers to receive disability benefits while reducing costs for business owners and insurance companies. It will clarify the costs and liabilities businesses are responsible for, and will still allow injured workers to receive necessary benefits.
However, opponents say this bill is designed to benefit businesses at the expense of workers. In order to continue receiving disability payments after the 15-year mark, employees will have to fill out a form, provide evidence, and get their claim approved. In essence, the bill is designed to reduce costs for businesses while making it more difficult for workers to receive the long-term disability benefits they need.
If passed, the bill will only apply to future workers’ comp cases. Those currently receiving permanent, partial disability benefits will not have to comply with the 15-year cap. Furthermore, workers who suffer permanent, total disability from a workplace accident will still be able to receive lifetime disability benefits.
Our Louisville Workers’ Compensation Attorney Is Here to Help
With years of experience, Justice Law Office provides efficient representation to injured workers in Kentucky. We stay up to date on state and federal laws, and will guide you through the legal process. If you have suffered a workplace injury, our Louisville workers’ compensation lawyer will analyze your situation and work diligently on your behalf.
Contact our firm today to schedule a free initial consultation.