I recently blogged about helpful links for the injured worker on the North Carolina Industrial Commission website. However, I left out an important free resource that can help injured workers find out if their employer has workers’ compensation insurance, and find out who the insurance company is.
The NC Workers’ Compensation Act requires most employers who regularly employ three or more workers to carry workers’ compensation insurance, or to obtain a license from the commissioner of insurance allowing them to be “self-insured.” Unfortunately, employers too often violate the law by neglecting to carry insurance, thereby putting their employees at risk of sustaining injuries for which they will not receive the compensation they deserve. If you sustain a compensable work related injury and the employer does not have insurance, you can still receive benefits directly from your employer, although this is much less reliable and can depend on the assets and financial situation of your employer.
Curious as to whether your employer has insurance? The NC Industrial Commission provides a free service that allows you to search the name of your employer to see if your employer has insurance. It is called the “Workers’ Comp. Name Search System,” and is completely free.
This service can also be helpful for injured workers who are having problems finding out who the insurance company is. Sometimes, hostile employers will refuse to give you insurance information in an attempt to prevent you from collecting workers’ compensation benefits. Using this service, you can usually find the insurance company and contact them yourself to get the ball rolling on your workers’ comp. claim. I must note, however, that it is never a bad idea to contact a workers’ compensation attorney before you start talking to the Insurance Company to ensure that your rights are protected.