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Workers' Compensation

Anyone considering a career as a paralegal should have a firm understanding of workers' compensation law. The reason is simple: You're far more likely to be involved in workers' compensation cases than criminal law cases, intellectual property cases, or even business disputes. The only types of cases that are more common are personal injury or medical malpractice, both of which have very strong ties to workers' compensation law. 

Knowing the ins and outs of workers' compensation is an absolutely essential skill for any paralegal. Having a solid foundation in this field of law is also a great way to land a job with a private law firm or local, state, or federal governments. This course presents workers' compensation in a straightforward and enjoyable manner. It follows up on other courses taught by a popular legal instructor who has created criminal law and legal nurse consulting courses that have earned strong praise from students. 

6 Weeks / 24 Course Hrs
Starting July 17, 2019

Offered in Partnership with your Preferred School

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Learning Method

Instructor-led

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Starting July 17 | August 14

Workers' Compensation

Details + Objectives

Course Code: wcp

What You Will Learn
  • Learn what workers’ compensation is and the benefits a worker is entitled to receive
  • Examine the workers’ compensation system that covers all federal employees
  • Understand how social security, Medicare, and Medicaid interact with workers’ compensation
  • Learn what types of injuries are covered under workers’ compensation
  • Learn specifics about medical and disability benefits
  • Understand what happens when there is conflict between employers, employees, and insurance companies regarding workers’ compensation
How the course is taught
  • Instructor-led course
  • 6 weeks in duration
  • Courses begin each month
  • 2 lessons released each week
  • 24 course hours
How you will benefit
  • Gain a full understanding of workers’ compensation law—one of the most common types of cases you’re likely to encounter as a paralegal
  • Prepare for a job with a private law firm or local, state, or federal governments

Outline

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What Is Workers' Compensation?

In our first lesson, we'll go over the basic concepts in workers' compensation. You'll learn how your chances of being involved in a workers' compensation case—either as employee, employer, paralegal, or human resource coordinator—are much higher than you might expect. Every year, hundreds of thousands of claims are filed. In this lesson, we'll review how the system works, how claims are filed, and why it's so vital for you to know and understand the basic workers' compensation system.

Workers' Compensation Benefits

Would you like to know exactly what benefits an injured worker is entitled to receive? Not sure what terms like temporary total disability, permanent total disability, temporary partial, and many of the other terms used to describe workers' compensation benefits really mean? In this lesson, we'll take the mystery out of them all. We'll go through each type of benefit, avoiding the legal jargon to provide a down-to-earth explanation of the benefit system in the workers' compensation system.

Federal Workers' Compensation

Today, we'll examine the workers' compensation system that covers all federal employees. This is a huge and multilayered bureaucracy, but we'll go through it step by step to show you how the federal system, which covers hundreds of thousands of federal workers, is both similar to and different from the state systems. We'll also examine some of the new initiatives created to track workers' compensation fraud and to prevent government agencies from making double or triple payments for the same injuries.

Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid

How do Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid interact with workers' compensation benefits? We'll answer that question in this lesson. We'll begin with an overview of these three systems. Then we'll proceed to a discussion about how these agencies work with state and federal workers' compensation agencies to provide different levels of payments and benefits. If you've ever been injured on the job, are close to retirement, are pregnant, or are in any way disabled, then you need to know how all of these systems work together, as well as what types of benefits you can receive from each.

Employers' and Employees' Roles

So far, we've focused on the workers' compensation system, from benefits to the relationships between other government agencies. In this lesson, we'll get specific about who is covered under workers' compensation statutes. What, for instance, qualifies a person as an "employee?" Are business owners covered by workers' compensation? How many employees must you have before you're legally obligated to make payments to the state workers' compensation fund? We'll answer these and many other questions in this lesson.

What Qualifies as an Injury?

What types of injuries are covered under workers' compensation? We all assume that if you slip and hurt yourself on the job, your injury will be covered. But is it? What about other types of injuries, such as repetitive stress injuries or psychological trauma? Are they covered as well? In today's lesson, you'll learn how injuries are classified under workers' compensation systems and the rules that employees must follow in determining which injuries are covered and which are not.

Medical Benefits

It's time to get specific about medical benefits provided under workers' compensation. How much is the injured employee obligated to pay out of pocket? How many treatments may the employee receive? What about physical therapy or chiropractic care? We'll address these questions in today's lesson, and we'll also take a look at some less traditional remedies. Just what types of treatment will the workers' compensation system pay for and what types will they force the employee to pay for?

Disability Benefits

In this lesson, we'll talk about the amount of money an injured employee will receive for different types of injuries. You'll learn the precise details about the dollar amounts an injured employee can expect to receive, and we'll break this down by the classification of benefits as temporary or total temporary disability. We'll also go over how injuries are reclassified as permanent and what that means for the benefits paid out. Finally, we'll explore how benefits are actually paid and the possibilities of lump-sum payments.

Hearings

In this lesson, we'll focus on what happens when an injured employee comes into conflict with his or her employer about benefits. Suppose that the employer wants to terminate benefits? What recourse does the employee have? The employee can request a hearing for a judicial decision about benefits. So today we'll examine how these hearings are scheduled, what evidence can be brought up at a hearing, the function of administrative law judges, and how attorneys get paid to represent people at workers' compensation hearings.

Jurisdiction and Awards

How are workers' compensation awards paid out? Can an injured employee opt for a lump sum instead of a regular monthly payment? How do workers' compensation boards enforce their judgments against employers and insurance companies? These are just a few of the questions we'll answer as we examine the issues surrounding obtaining an award. Finally, we'll also explore the power that workers' compensation boards have to enforce their regulations, not only against employers, employees and insurance companies, but also against doctors and other medical professionals.

Insurance and Workers' Compensation

Most employers don't pay workers' compensation benefits from their own budgets. Instead, they obtain workers' compensation insurance. In this lesson, we'll examine all of the issues surrounding how workers' compensation insurance works, from issuing the policy to paying out claims. Along the way, you'll learn how insurance companies make money from issuing policies and specify certain types of injuries that justify the insurance company from refusing to pay a claim. We'll also examine the role of the insurance defense attorney, who is hired by the insurance company to represent companies in workers' compensation hearings.

Appeals

In our final lesson, we'll follow a workers' compensation case through the appellate process. What powers do appellate courts have in workers' compensation cases? Can they modify the award of benefits or completely terminate them? What is the procedure that an employee must follow to bring an appeal when his or her benefits have been terminated? We'll answer these questions and explore the role of higher courts in workers' compensation cases.

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Instructors & Support

Neal Bevans

Neal Bevans is a former Assistant District Attorney. A veteran of over 150 trials, Bevans has tried every major felony from rape, murder, and narcotics to armed robbery. One of his cases was televised nationally on Court TV. He has a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Georgia (Order of the Barrister) and has been a college instructor for over 10 years. He has also presented numerous seminars to medical professionals about the legal field, including training seminars for legal nurse consultants and sexual assault nurse examiners. In addition to practicing real estate law, he also worked as a title examiner and bought and sold real estate investment properties. An author of fiction and nonfiction material, his textbook Criminal Law and Procedure for Paralegals, was published in 2002. His second textbook, Tort Law for Legal Assistants, was published in 2003. He has also published numerous magazine articles about many aspects of the legal and medical fields, including articles focusing on developing a legal nurse consulting practice. He is also a contributing columnist to Legal Assistant Today magazine.

Requirements

Requirements

Prerequisites:

There are no prerequisites to take this course.

Requirements:

Hardware Requirements: 

  • This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac device.

Software Requirements: 

  • PC: Windows XP or later.
  • Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Flash Player. Click here to download the Flash Player.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.

Other:

  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
Instructional Materials

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.

FAQs

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When can I get started?

A new session of each course opens each month, allowing you to enroll whenever your busy schedule permits.

How does it work?

Once a course session starts, two lessons will be released each week for the six-week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.

How long do I have to complete each lesson?

The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes two weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.

What if I need an extension?

The final exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the final exam has been released, you will have two weeks plus 10 days (24 days total) to complete the final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.

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