As of February 1 of 2014, you will no longer be able to challenge your workers’ comp benefits in court in Oklahoma. The current court-based system has been reformed through recent legislature, changing it to an administrative system.
Why the New Reform?
Many in the Oklahoma government believe this reform and switch from a court-based system will save businesses considerable amounts of money. With large employers selecting to opt out of their current benefit plans, they believe they’ll save more by selecting alternative benefits.
Why the Concern?
With any reform of this type, the draft on paper is much neater and appealing than what is to come. If your employer opts out of current benefit plans, you will be left with subpar care. And if you get hurt on the job, then you can forget about challenging your right to greater compensation in court. You will no longer be able to do so.
How does this save people money? Theoretically it does because businesses will spend less on premiums, but as a result, employees will be left with little to no care and no way of challenging insurance compensation.
Savings always come at a cost to someone else. Businesses may save more money over time, but employees that get hurt will be left without the compensation they need to make a full recovery. The business saves, but the employee is left to fend for themselves.
What Can You Do?
You need to know what type of benefits your business will continue to provide and what will be eliminated from your plan. The more informed you are concerning the benefits offered to you, the less shocked and awed you will be if you get hurt and are offered little compensation. You’ll still be outraged though.
Take safety precautions serious. This cannot be stressed enough. Take care of yourself and the people around you because you may not get much compensation if you or a coworker gets hurt.