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What if my employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance?

The New Jersey workers’ compensation system provides medical and wage benefits to workers who are injured on the job or suffer from an occupational illness. The idea behind the workers’ compensation program is that injured workers can obtain benefits quickly without the need to establish who caused their injury in exchange for the right to pursue a traditional personal injury case against their employer. A basic premise of the workers’ compensation system is that there will always be funds available to pay for an injured workers’ claim. To do this, lawmakers require that all employers in New Jersey (except public employers) either obtain workers’ compensation insurance or arrange for an approved self-insurance plan. Employers must display proof of coverage in a prominent location.

If an employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, employees can report the employer to the Office of Special Compensation Funds and can also inform the Division of Workers’ Compensation by completing a Report of Non-Compliance. Employees who engage in this process will not need to identify themselves, but will need to provide the name, address, and principals of the business they work for, if that information is available. Employers who fail to obtain workers’ compensation insurance can be fined up to $5,000 for the first 20 days and then $10,000 for each additional 10-day period.

Employees who are injured on the job while working for an employer who did not carry workers’ compensation insurance may still qualify for workers’ compensation benefits through the Uninsured Employer’s Fund (UEF). The UEF provides temporary disability benefits and medical expenses to injured workers who work for employers “who fail to provide the required workers’ compensation insurance coverage and who fail to make such benefit payments as awarded by the Division of Workers’ Compensation.”

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The highly competent lawyers at Petrillo and Goldberg represent clients with personal injury claims, workers compensation claims, slip-and-fall cases and automobile accident victims. We work for you, and take our job of getting the best possible results for you seriously.