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Being Injured on an “Under the Table” Job

  • Published: August 23, 2023

As an employee, if you are injured while working, you are eligible to receive monetary benefits for the harm you suffered. Workers’ compensation is insurance that offers employees cash benefits and medical care if they become ill or harmed from their jobs. However, obtaining this money becomes complicated when a person is working “under the table.”

If you were injured on the job and believe you have a case against an organization or a person for the harm you suffered while working, contact an experienced workers’ compensation attorney immediately. These lawyers can go over all your questions, review your legal options, and help you fight for the compensation you deserve.

What Does Being Paid “Under the Table” Mean?

When an individual works under the table, it means that they are being paid in cash for the work and services they provide. As a result, there is no way to trace the funds to the worker or their employer. The problem with these jobs, in terms of workers’ compensation, is that because there is no official record of employment, most of the benefits that come from being an employee are also gone. This includes health insurance and workers’ compensation insurance. It also makes it harder for injured workers to collect workers’ compensation benefits if they become sick or injured on the job. 

Some of the more common jobs that are likely to be paid under the table include manual labor, handyman jobs, housekeeping positions, and childcare. In addition, because these jobs are often paid in cash, they tend not to be reported to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Overview of Workers’ Compensation Laws

A workers’ compensation insurance policy offers specific employees income replacement (indemnity) and medical benefits that arise from workplace illnesses or injuries. However, only the harm arising from the ordinary course of business is compensable. In California, all companies that have employees must purchase a workers’ compensation insurance policy.

This policy will usually cover medical treatments, such as doctor visits, prescription medications, and surgeries, and it will also provide indemnity benefits. These benefits are calculated by reviewing the injured worker’s weekly income and California’s laws. Consequently, without a record of earnings, it can be challenging to show how much money a person has earned. For these reasons, if you or a family member have been injured while working and have been paid under the table, consider speaking with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney immediately about the legal options you have.

Recovering Compensation if You Are Paid Under the Table

If an employee sustained an injury or illness while working, they should be able to recover compensation for their medical expenses, lost income, and other losses. However, if a worker is paid under the table, it can create issues when the worker tries to pursue workers’ compensation benefits. Yet, this does not mean it will be impossible for these workers to recover compensation. Depending on the situation, these individuals may still have legal options they can pursue to secure the money they deserve. 

Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, which means that a person can recover financial benefits for their work-related injuries regardless of who caused the accident or harm. However, in return for these benefits, the injured workers cannot take legal action against the employer to recover compensation. As a result, if you are being paid under the table and your employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance, you may be able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against your employer. 

However, to succeed in a personal injury legal claim, the injured worker must show that the employer was responsible for causing their harm and that they suffered financial damages because of it. If they can show this liability, they may be able to go after various types of damages, including some that cannot be recoverable through a traditional workers’ compensation claim. These damages include both economic and non-economic damages, which refer to payment for:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Personal property losses
  • Ongoing medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Mental anguish

However, because these damages include some hard-to-prove losses, it may be a good idea to reach out to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to help you with this process. These legal professionals can investigate the incident, look into your employer’s workers’ compensation history, find evidence to establish the extent of your losses, and fight for the money you need to relax and recover. 

Do Not Run Out of Time to File Your Legal Claim

Another critical point to remember when bringing legal action against another party is that you have limited time to file your claim. In California, individuals will only have two years to pursue a lawsuit following the date of their injuries. If they do not file within this time period, they can be barred from going after the money they need. 

That is why if you were injured in a workplace accident, even if you were paid under the table, contact a skilled workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible. These legal professionals can promptly review your accident, determine whether you have a viable case, figure out how much time you have to file your claim, and ensure that the appropriate documents are prepared and submitted before time runs out. 

Contact Kcns Law Group Today if You Have Been Injured on an “Under the Table” Job

If you suffered injuries while working under the table, you likely have numerous questions about your legal options and the benefits you may be entitled to. Fortunately, you do not have to take on this challenging ordeal alone.

When you work with a skilled workers’ compensation lawyer, these legal professionals can help you fight for the justice and compensation you deserve. Do not wait to get the legal help you need. Contact KCNS Law Group today by filling out our contact form or call us at (818) 937-9255 for a free consultation.

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