Louisiana Workers' Compensation Laws
UPDATED: March 30, 2011
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Louisiana workers’ compensation laws regulate the kinds of injuries for which a worker may recover workers’ compensation benefits in Louisiana, as well as the kinds of benefits available to injured or sick workers.
Claims under Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Laws
An occupational illness, or an illness that develops because of common conditions at the workplace that prove to be hazardous, is one kind of medical condition covered by Louisiana workers’ compensation law. Such illnesses may include black lung disease, hearing loss, or carpal tunnel syndrome. However, other conditions like arthritis and heart disease are not covered.
Falling, slipping, tripping, or other occupational accidents that injure an employee are also covered by his employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. But if a worker has caused injury to himself, or was using alcohol or drugs at the time of the injury, he will probably not be able to get workers’ compensation benefits in Louisiana.
Finally, the dependents of an employee who unfortunately dies because of his occupational injury or disease may recover death benefits.
Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Workers’ compensation benefits for injured or ill workers in Louisiana include income replacement benefits, medical costs, mileage reimbursement, and death and funeral benefits.
Types of Louisiana Replacement Income Benefits:
1) Temporary Total Disability Benefits (TTD): Available if the employee’s illness or injury either partially or completely hinders his ability to work during his recovery period. Until the worker reaches maximum medical improvement, a worker under TTD may receive two-thirds of his pre-injury average weekly wage each week. Note that Louisiana, unlike other states, does not distinguish between Temporary Total Disability and Temporary Partial Disability benefits.
2) Permanent Total Disability Benefits (PTD): An employee may receive weekly two-thirds of his pre-injury average weekly wage, or a lump sum payment if he is permanently unable to work.
3) Permanent Partial Disability Benefits (PPD): The worker’s medical condition has improved to its medical maximum, but will still impair his ability to work in some way (through loss of a thumb or loss of a limb, for example). He will receive some benefits, the amount of which depends on the worker’s percentage of disability and the body part affected.
Treatment for Medical Condition
The cost of medical treatment for your work injury or disease will be covered by your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. Your employer's health care provider will pay your doctor and hospital costs directly to the medical provider.
Reimbursement for Mileage Costs
When an employee must travel to have his workplace disease or injury medically examined and treated, the cost of the mileage for traveling to and from appointments may be reimbursed by his employer’s workers’ compensation insurance.
Death and Funeral
In the unfortunate event that a worker dies from his occupational disease or injury, his dependent relatives will receive death benefits as well as an amount not to exceed $7,500 for funeral costs.
Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Statutes
The full text of the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act can be found in the Louisiana Revised Statutes.
Employers Subject to Workers’ Compensation: Workers’ Compensation Act, Title 23 § 1032; Covered Employees: Workers’ Compensation Act, Title 23 § 1035; Benefits: Workers’ Compensation Act, Title 23 §§ 1201-1236; Claims Procedure: Workers’ Compensation Act, Title 23 § 1310.