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As we approach 2024, it is important to stay abreast of the changes that come with it. For those who have been injured on the job, or who may be in the future, workers' compensation laws are of utmost importance. Understanding these laws can be confusing, but we are here to help guide you through the changes that will take place in 2024.
In this blog post, we will be breaking down the upcoming changes to workers' compensation laws and what it means for you. Whether you are an injured worker, an employer, or just someone interested in learning more about workers' compensation, this comprehensive guide is for you.
Firstly, it is important to understand what workers' compensation is, and how it works. Workers' compensation is a system that provides benefits to employees who are injured or become ill as a result of their jobs. These benefits can include medical treatment, rehabilitation, and lost wages. It is also designed to protect employers from lawsuits by their employees for work-related injuries.
The first change to workers' compensation laws you need to be aware of is that medical providers who treat workers' compensation patients will now be required to obtain accreditation. This means that only providers who meet certain standards will be able to provide care to workers' compensation patients. This change is meant to ensure that injured workers are receiving high-quality care from qualified providers.
Another change that will take place in 2024 is that there will be tighter regulations around the use of opioids to treat work-related injuries. Before 2024, doctors could prescribe opioids without many restrictions, leading to a high rate of addiction among injured workers. With the new regulations, doctors will be required to follow stricter guidelines on opioid use. This will not only protect injured workers from addiction but also reduce the number of opioid-related deaths in the workplace.
There will also be changes to the benefits injured workers receive in 2024. One of the major changes is that the maximum weekly compensation rate for permanent total disability will increase. Many injured workers who are unable to return to work face financial hardships, so this change will provide some financial relief. Additionally, the length of time an injured worker can receive compensation for permanent partial disability has been extended. This means that those who are not totally disabled but still unable to work to the same capacity as before their injury will receive compensation for a longer period.
Another change to workers' compensation laws in 2024 is related to the use of medical marijuana for work-related injuries. Currently, medical marijuana is legal in some states but not recognized under federal law. With the new changes, insurers will be required to cover medical marijuana for work-related injuries in states where it is legal. This change is an important one for injured workers who find medical marijuana to be an effective treatment option.
In conclusion, staying informed about changes to workers' compensation laws is important for both employers and employees. With the new regulations set to take place in 2024, injured workers will be better protected and receive higher-quality care. For those approaching retirement age, understanding these changes is crucial to ensure that they receive the benefits they are entitled to if they are injured on the job. As always, if you have any questions about workers' compensation laws or need help with a claim, speak with an experienced attorney.