What is a Worker's Compensation Specialist?

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

A worker's compensation specialist is a person who has received additional training in the law regarding worker’s compensation. There are many different disciplines that might require someone to become a specialist in this field. People who are insurance agents or underwriters, attorneys, or those who manage safety and risk for companies all might take training in worker's compensation issues.

Some attorneys may work for employees who feel they were wrongly denied worker's compensation.
Some attorneys may work for employees who feel they were wrongly denied worker's compensation.

In the US, many people who claim to be worker's compensation specialists are registered with the National Registry of Worker’s Compensation Specialists. This registry allows people to take both training and an examination. The training is usually 12 hours of class work followed by an Internet examination of 50 questions. One must answer 70% of these questions prior to being registered as a specialist.

Workers' compensation exists to provide financial assistance and medical treatment to employees who are injured on the job.
Workers' compensation exists to provide financial assistance and medical treatment to employees who are injured on the job.

Initial training reviews the laws of worker’s compensation as set out by the US government. Some programs offer study at home options to allow for greater time to prepare for testing. In some cases, work experience may be substituted for actual classes. The specialist must understand worker’s compensation as it relates to the employee and the corporation.

As well as the initial examination, the registered worker's compensation specialist must complete approximately 15 hours of continuing education every three years, in order to maintain registration, although individual states may have different requirements. This person is also expected to keep abreast of any changes at the federal or state level to worker’s comp laws.

The worker's compensation specialist may work in a diverse number of fields. Some attorneys, for example, may work for employees who feel they were wrongly denied worker's compensation. Alternately, an attorney who is a specialist in this area might defend a company that is accused of denying benefits to an employee.

A specialist working in the insurance field might help companies by writing policies and determining costs to cover worker’s comp claims. Those who manage safety and risk might apply their special knowledge to help companies reduce risk to employees getting injured, or to determine such risk so an insurance company charges appropriate amounts.

Worker's compensation specialists can help clients get money to pay for medications to treat on-the-job injuries.
Worker's compensation specialists can help clients get money to pay for medications to treat on-the-job injuries.
Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Tricia has a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and has been a frequent wiseGEEK contributor for many years. She is especially passionate about reading and writing, although her other interests include medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion. Tricia lives in Northern California and is currently working on her first novel.

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