New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Law

Workers’ compensation is a no-fault insurance system designed to compensate New Jersey workers who are injured on the job. Qualified employees may receive workers’ compensation benefits for the medical bills and lost wages associated with their injury or illness, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. Nearly all New Jersey employees are covered, with the exception of independent contractors. However, longshoremen, maritime workers, railroad workers, and other federal employees are covered under federal workers’ compensation law.

All New Jersey employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance or face serious penalties. Employers who fail insure workers or knowingly misrepresent an employee as an independent contractor may face criminal charges in addition to hefty fines.

South Jersey Workers' Compensation lawyers review the steps to take after a workplace accidentFiling a Claim

Workers who are hurt in a workplace accident should seek medical care immediately. What may initially seem like a minor injury can turn into a major health issue if left untreated. Any employee who has been injured on the job or has been diagnosed with a work-related illness should notify their employer as soon as possible. Though written notice is not required, it is recommended that the worker document as much of the incident as possible, such as where and how the accident happened, who was there, and what injuries were sustained. Keeping up with all medical and rehabilitation treatments is crucial. Lastly, an injured worker should seek legal advice from an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to ensure their rights are fully protected and that all eligible benefits are obtained. The deadline for filing a workers’ compensation claim in New Jersey is two years from the date the injury occurred.

Certain injuries are not the result of a single accident or event, but rather develop over time, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. The same is true for certain occupational illnesses. This can make it difficult to determine the exact date for which the clock begins running to file a claim. For this reason and more, workers are advised to report any injuries and illnesses as soon as they are discovered. This will help to ensure the details surrounding the injury are properly documented so that workers can begin receiving benefits as early as possible.

Approval or Denial

After an employer has received notice of an injury, he or she must notify the company’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier so that a First Report of Injury can be filed with the state. After conducting an investigation, the insurer will either accept or deny the claim. If the claim is accepted, the worker will receive compensation for all injury-related medical expenses, a portion of his or her lost wages, and in some cases, payment for permanent disability.

Claims can be denied for a variety of reasons. Claims that are filed with inadequate or inaccurate information will surely be denied. Another common cause for a denial is when the employer disputes the worker’s assertion that the injury or illness is truly work-related. Workers who have been initially denied benefits are advised to seek the counsel of a qualified workers’ compensation lawyer for help in filing an appeal.

Appeals Process

Workers who have been denied workers’ compensation benefits have two options for filing an appeal. The first is to file an informal claim through the New Jersey Division of Workers’ Compensation. A hearing will be scheduled within a few weeks, in which case a judge will review accounts by both sides as well as any documentation such as medical records and witnesses’ reports. He or she will then issue a recommendation, which is not binding. If a settlement is not agreed upon, the worker can then proceed with a formal claim.

Formal hearings can be lengthy and complex. Both sides must prevent evidence and testify under oath before a judge, whose final decision is binding. Workers who wish to appeal the decision must bring their case to the New Jersey Appellate Division of the Superior Court.

South Jersey Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Pietras Saracino Smith & Meeks LLP Recover Benefits for Injured Workers

If you were injured in a workplace accident or contracted a work-related illness, contact a South Jersey workers’ compensation lawyer at Pietras Saracino Smith & Meeks LLP. We can help you navigate the complex system and obtain the workers’ compensation benefits to which you are entitled. From our office located in Cherry Hill, NJ,we represent clients throughout South Jersey, including those in Camden County, Burlington County, and Gloucester County. For a free consultation call us at 856-761-3773 or complete our online contact form.

SJ Top Attorneys New Jersey Association for Justice NJSBA NJ Supreme Court Certified Burlington Bar Association Camden County Bar Association

©2020 Pietras Saracino Smith & Meeks, LLP - All Rights Reserved. - Site Map | Legal | Privacy Policy

Attorney Advertising Materials. Christopher J. Saracino is responsible for the content of this website. This website is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.

Coronavirus COVID-19 UPDATE:

Coronavirus COVID-19 UPDATE:

Please be advised that in accordance with Governor Murphy’s Executive Order 107, which imposed strict limitations on the operations of "brick-and-mortar" businesses and required telecommuting to the greatest extent possible, all N.J. workers’ compensation courts will continue to be closed to the public and to non-essential court personnel until April 13, 2020.

In response to overwhelming requests from the Workers’ Compensation Bar to hold non-emergent matters electronically or by teleconference, as of April 6, 2020, the following Workers’ Compensation Judges shall be designated by the N.J. Department of Labor and Workforce Development and the N.J. Division of Workers’ Compensation as essential personnel and shall report to their home vicinages for the purpose of hearing as many Workers’ Compensation matters as possible by telephonic conferencing, including all emergent matters and the following non-emergent matters, pre-trial conferences, general motions for medical and temporary benefits, and settlements by affidavit:

Hon. Audrey Kernan, S.J., Atlantic City WC Courthouse
Hon. Arthur Marchand, A.S.J., Bridgeton WC Courthouse
Hon. Ingrid French, A.S.J., Camden WC Courthouse
Hon. Lionel Simon III, A.S.J., Freehold WC Courthouse
Hon. Diana Ferriero, S.J., Hackensack WC Courthouse
Hon. Jill Fader, S.J., Jersey City WC Courthouse
Hon. Glenn Kaplan, S.J., Lebanon WC Courthouse
Hon. Michael Luther, S.J., Mt. Arlington WC Courthouse
Hon. George Geist, S.J., Mt. Holly WC Courthouse
Hon. Ashley Hutchinson, A.S.J., New Brunswick WC Courthouse
Hon. Philip Tornetta, A.S.J., Newark WC Courthouse
Hon. William Roca, S.J., Paterson WC Courthouse
Hon. Maria Del Valle Koch, S.J., Plainfield WC Courthouse
Hon. Eugene Mulvaney, S.J., Toms River WC Courthouse
Hon. David Puma, S.J., Trenton WC Courthouse

The Division’s plan is to limit physical interactions in our workers’ compensation courts to the greatest extent possible and shift to the use of telephone conferencing, and if possible video conferencing for judges, attorneys, and litigants. There will be no in-person Workers’ Compensation Court proceedings (except for extremely limited emergent matters and certain ongoing motions for medical and temporary benefits and trials in which case social distancing will be enforced). Court offices will remain closed for in-person submissions. Filings will continue to be accepted electronically through COURTS On-line.

The N.J. Division of Workers’ Compensation’s number one goal is to limit the exposure and spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus to court personnel, attorneys and their staff, litigants, witnesses, and members of the public at large.

Pietras Saracino Smith & Meeks, LLP also continues to closely monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and its impact on our local community and the world at large. In accordance with Governor Murphy’s Executive Order 107, our office is closed and the members of the firm continue to work remotely. As such, the members of the firm may have limited access to information during this time. We continue to appreciate your understanding. We encourage our current clients, new clients, and fellow members of the bar to contact us via e-mail as that remains the best form of communication. All attorneys and paralegals have access to e-mail and case information. We have designated essential personnel to report to our office for the purpose of handling emergent matters only and to complete essential administrative tasks. Pietras Saracino Smith & Meeks, LLP remains committed to complying with all health and governmental regulations. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with those most affected by this situation.