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What is the difference between disability and workers’ comp?

When an injury prevents you from working, you must know how to respond to recover as quickly as possible. You suffered harm but do not know if your injury qualifies for disability insurance or workers’ compensation.

Clear up your confusion with help from Chron. Learn whether to turn to your insurance provider or your employer to get back to work ASAP.

The similarities

After suffering an illness or injury, both workers’ comp and disability insurance offer compensation. Both coverage types vary according to a person’s geographic location and job. Disability insurance and workers’ comp both only pay a percentage of a person’s regular wages. Neither coverage type honors claims stemming from self-inflicted or purposeful harm.

The differences

Workers’ comp only covers illness and injuries sustained on the clock while an employee tends to standard job duties. Employers bear responsibility for paying for workers’ comp coverage, which compensates injured employees for lost wages and medical costs. If an injury or illness sustained off the clock prevents a person from working, she or he can submit a disability insurance claim to receive payments for lost wages. Employees pay for their own disability insurance premiums, not their employer. One major difference between the two coverage types is those who qualify for workers’ comp have an injury expected to improve, not a disability.

The restrictions

Neither disability insurance nor workers’ comp offer injured persons their full salary. Sometimes disability insurance covers less than half a person’s wages. Workers employed in industries with a high risk of long-term illness or harm may pay extra premiums.

Take quick action when you become ill or injured. Proper knowledge of such matters brings peace of mind.