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AThis is a common question. In Georgia, employees are entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits, but not independent contractors. However, many times an employer will tell one of his workers he is an “independent contractor” when he is actually an employee. Therefore, you should not rely completely upon what your employer calls you or even whether or not you receive a W2 or 1099 from your employer. Legally speaking, this does not determine whether one is an employee or an independent contractor. Other factors, such as how one is paid, who provides his equipment, and who sets his work schedule determine one’s employment status.
Are “subcontractors” entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits?
ANo. Workers’ Compensation claims are considered civil cases, whereas immigration cases are considered to be criminal cases; therefore, opening a workers’ compensation claim will not affect your immigration case.
Will opening a workers’ compensation claim affect my pending immigration case?
AYes. In fact, my law firm has represented many clients in this exact scenario. If you are injured in a car wreck while working, you are entitled to open both a workers’ compensation claim as well as a personal injury claim, so long as you were not the at-fault driver. Your workers’ compensation claim is against the insurer of your employer, and your personal injury claim is against the insurer of the at-fault driver.
I was injured in an automobile accident while working. Do I have a workers’ compensation claim?
AYes, it doesn’t matter whether you are paid by check or in cash. Either way, you are still entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if you are injured while at work.
I was paid in cash (not by check) by my employer? Can I still open a workers’ compensation claim?
AYes, in Georgia, it doesn’t matter how long you have been employed by an employer. If you injure yourself at work, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for your injuries.
I was injured on my first day of work at a new job. Can I open a workers’ compensation claim?
AYes, in Georgia, all injured workers are entitled to receive medical attention for their injuries and disability benefits if they qualify according to their primary treating physician. Their legal status does not preclude them from receiving workers’ compensation benefits.
I do not have a Social Security Number. Can I open a workers’ compensation claim?
AIn Georgia, this is prohibited. An employer is prohibited from firing or retaliating against an injured worker simply because he opens a workers’ compensation claim or hires an attorney. There are penalties against such employers if they violate this law.
If I obtain an attorney for my workers’ compensation claim, will my boss fire me?