Insurance Company Lobby wants NC Legislators to cut benefits to Workers

Anyone who has been following Workers Compensation in North Carolina over the recent months (or years) knows that there is a constant battle raging with the insurance company lobbyists that are trying to persuade legislators to introduce a bill (we think, the bill hasn’t been introduced yet) to cap benefits for totally disabled workers at 500 weeks and force workers to take jobs that are not substantially similar to what they were doing pre-injury (and at lower income levels).

Your state representatives are being pressured by insurance company lobbyists and the NC Chamber of Commerce to reduce benefits to injured workers. One of the changes being pushed is placing an artificial cap on the number of weeks of weekly compensation benefits an injured worker can receive. That would allow weekly compensation benefits to be stopped even if someone is still disabled. Another change being considered is forcing injured workers to take any type job they can find if they can not return to the job they were doing when they were injured. An example of this would be a teacher, electrician, construction supervisor or any other worker being forced to take a Wal-Mart greeter job. The loss of income claim resulting from the job change would be capped. Several other reductions to benefits are being considered.

If you are an injured worker who is reading this blog, I encourage you to take action and contact your state representative to tell them how these changes might affect your lives. I ask that you call and write your Representative and Senator and ask them to vote against any new laws that reduce workers’ compensation benefits to injured workers. These new laws will probably pass if legislators don’t hear from the people they represent.

When you contact your representatives, tell them the following:

  • Please tell them how important your workers’ compensation benefits are to you and your family;
  • Let them know what the impact would be on you if your workers’ compensation benefits were reduced or stopped;
  • Tell them about your injury and how it has affected you;
  • Tell them not to give in to the insurance company lobbyists who want them to put profit before injured people;
  • You can also ask your family members and friends to call and write;

If you are not able to speak with your representatives when you call, please leave a detailed message outlining your concerns.

You can figure out who your representative is by going to this web page and inputting your zip code (You will need to go here first to look up the last four digits of your zip code).

If you have any questions, or need some help – please feel free to call my office at (919) 460-5422.  I’d be happy to look up the information for you.