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The restaurant industry in Minnesota is a significant contributor to the state’s economy and culture. However, working in this industry can be challenging and risky, mainly due to the job’s fast-paced and physically demanding nature. As a result, restaurant workers can be at risk of work-related injuries. To protect these employees, Minnesota’s workers’ compensation laws ensure that they receive the necessary medical care and financial support during their recovery.

This guide provides an overview of Minnesota’s workers’ compensation for restaurant employees, covering eligibility, filing claims, available coverage, and settlement options.

Contact us today to discuss your case.

Minnesota Restaurant Workers’ Compensation Laws: An Overview

In Minnesota, every employer, including restaurant owners, is legally required to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. Employers obtain coverage through a policy with a licensed insurance company or self-insurance approved by the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

There are a few exceptions to the workers’ compensation coverage requirement, such as:

  • Farm workers on a family farm,
  • Immediate family members of business owners and sole proprietors,
  • Household employees in a private home, and
  • Casual employees who work inconsistently or aren’t formally included in the payroll.

The cornerstone of Minnesota’s workers’ compensation laws is that employers assume the responsibility of providing a secure working environment for their workers.

What Benefits Does Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Provide Restaurant Workers?

When an employee gets hurt on the job, workers’ compensation insurance acts as a safety net, allowing them to focus on their healing process without worrying about their financial stability. This type of insurance provides three main benefits in Minnesota: wage-loss, medical, and vocational rehabilitation.

Wage-Loss Benefits

These benefits, also known as disability benefits, can help compensate you for the income you lose while recovering. There are four primary types of wage-loss benefits available.

  • Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits. If you cannot work due to your injury or illness but are expected to recover, you can receive TTD benefits. 
  • Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) Benefits. You can receive TPD benefits if you can work but not at your full capacity due to your injury or illness. 
  • Permanent Total Disability (PTD) Benefits. If your injury or illness is so severe that you cannot return to any gainful employment, you can receive PTD benefits. 
  • Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) Benefits. If your injury or illness causes a permanent loss of function or earning capacity, you can receive PPD benefits. 

In addition to wage-loss benefits, Minnesota restaurant workers may also be eligible for death and dependency benefits if a work-related injury or illness results in the death of a worker. These benefits provide financial assistance to the worker’s dependents and cover burial expenses up to $15,000. 

Medical Benefits

Minnesota workers’ compensation provides an injured employee with necessary and reasonable medical treatment and supplies to relieve or cure work injuries. This includes:

  • Psychological care to help you cope with any emotional or mental stress caused by your injury,
  • Chiropractic care to address musculoskeletal pain or injuries,
  • Podiatric care for foot and ankle problems,
  • Surgical treatment to repair injuries or restore function,
  • Hospitalization for serious injuries or conditions requiring intensive care, and
  • Prescription medications to manage pain, infection, or other symptoms.

In addition to the cost of your medical treatment, you’ll also be reimbursed for any reasonable expenses you incur while getting treatment. This includes travel costs, costs of medical reports, and, in some cases, attorney fees that are directly related to the treatment.

Vocational Rehabilitation Benefits

Vocational rehabilitation has two main goals: to get you back to a job related to your former employment or to help you find a new job in another field that pays as close as possible to what you earned before your injury or illness. These benefits cover a range of services, including career counseling, job placement assistance, and any necessary education or training.

Minnesota Restaurant Workers’ Compensation Eligibility Criteria

To qualify for workers’ compensation benefits in Minnesota, restaurant workers must meet specific conditions:

  • Work-related injury or illness. The injury or illness must have happened while doing your job duties or related to your work.
  • Employment relationship. You must be employed by a restaurant that is required to have workers’ compensation insurance.
  • Notice of injury. You must inform your employer about the injury or illness as soon as possible or within the timeframe required by your employer. 

If you are unsure if you meet these requirements, contact an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer to help determine your eligibility.

Minnesota Restaurant Employee Injury Claims Process

Understanding the workers’ compensation process is important to ensure you get the benefits and care you deserve. In case of an injury:

  • Report it to your employer immediately and seek medical attention as soon as possible,
  • Keep all the medical records safe, and
  • Provide accurate and detailed information while filling out the workers’ compensation claim form. 

The insurance company will investigate your claim and inform you if it’s approved or denied. If approved, you’ll receive the benefits you are eligible for; if denied, you can appeal the decision.

Minnesota Restaurant Workers’ Comp Settlements

Sometimes, even if your workers’ compensation claim has been denied or you are not satisfied with the coverage you have received, you may be able to enter into a settlement with the insurance company and receive compensation for your injuries. 

A settlement is an agreement between you and your employer to resolve your workers’ compensation claim by receiving a lump sum payment. This means you will receive a one-time payment instead of ongoing benefits. 

Settling your claim can be an excellent option to resolve it quickly and avoid a lengthy and expensive legal battle.

We’ll Help with Your Minnesota Restaurant Workers’ Compensation Claim

If you have suffered a work-related injury, getting the compensation you deserve can be complicated, especially when dealing with Minnesota’s workers’ compensation system. At Arechigo & Stokka, our skilled attorneys are here to simplify the process and fight for your rights. We have a successful history of managing workers’ compensation claims for restaurant workers in Minnesota.

We understand restaurant workers’ unique challenges and are committed to helping you get the maximum benefits you deserve. Our team will guide you through every step of the claims process, from reporting your injury to negotiating with the insurance company. We are committed to fighting for your best interests.  Contact us today to discuss your case.

Author Photo Joshua R. Stokka

Josh has been representing injured workers for over 10 years. Josh was born and raised in Fargo, North Dakota, and attended the University of Minnesota-Duluth where he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminology. Mr. Stokka alson received his law degree from the Hamline University School of Law. During law school, Josh clerked at a Minnesota law firm specializing in personal injury and workers’ compensation. Prior to practicing in the area of workers’ compensation, Josh clerked for a judge in the 7th Judicial District in Minnesota. This valuable experience gave him insight into how judges think, do their jobs behind the scene, and how to frame a case in order to obtain a favorable result.  Now, he focuses 100% of his practice on defending injured workers in Minnesota.

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