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Common Workplace Injuries Covered by Workers’ Compensation in Sioux Falls

Worker’s Compensation

When you get hurt on the job, a million questions run through your mind. You wonder how you’ll pay your bills, how you’ll cover your medical expenses, what will happen to your family — so many stressors on top of an injury that can impact your mental health and recovery. 

Workers’ compensation in Sioux Falls, SD, helps protect employees like you. With an eligible claim, you can be financially reimbursed for medical costs and lost wages. The team at Alvine Law Firm specializes in personal injury cases as well as workers’ compensation and criminal law. You can turn to us for help with any workers’ compensation injury claim, and our lawyers will work tirelessly to help you recover costs and gain peace of mind. 

Sioux Falls’s major industries include distribution and logistics, food processing, advanced manufacturing, and the biomedical field. Employees in these sectors each face unique occupational hazards that could lead to injuries on the job. 

Read on to learn more about workers’ compensation in South Dakota, including what injuries qualify for a claim and how to navigate the claims process. 

Understand Workers’ Compensation in Sioux Falls

South Dakota does not legally require employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance. However, many employers still decide to offer coverage to avoid lawsuits. Workers’ compensation insurance in South Dakota can include coverage for:

  • Workplace injuries and associated medical expenses
  • Lost income from temporary or permanent disabilities 
  • Physical rehabilitation or retraining for work 
  • Death benefits for family members after a work-related fatality 

The South Dakota Department of Labor’s Division of Insurance oversees the South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Program. Employees who work for companies with workers’ compensation insurance will need their employers to complete a First Report of Injury (Form 101) and Monthly Payment of Reports (Form 107) using the online management system. 

If your employer is not insured, then you must consult with a lawyer to discuss your options for recovering lost income and compensation for physical and emotional suffering.

Our personal injury attorneys are here to help. Call Alvine Law Firm at 605-275-0808 to schedule a free consultation.

Workers’ Compensation Eligibility Criteria in South Dakota 

The South Dakota Workers’ Compensation System outlines eligibility requirements and coverage exemptions in its employee’s guide. The South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Law does not apply to agricultural laborers or domestic services unless they work over 20 hours per calendar week and for more than six weeks in any 13-week period.

Independent contractors who are certified as exempt by the department and other workforce participants do also not qualify for the program.

For all other employees whose employers have workers’ compensation coverage, any injury or illness sustained on the job can qualify, including minor injuries that require first aid to severe injuries that lead to permanent disability or disfigurement. 

The Claims Process for Workplace Injuries

Employers should complete a First Report of Injury form within the first seven (7) days after your injury or illness or within seven (7) days from them learning of your injury or illness. 

It is recommended to have your supervisor write a detailed injury report with as much detail as possible, including:

  • The date and time of the injury
  • The cause of the injury and circumstances surrounding it
  • Any type of equipment or personnel involved in the injury
  • Incidents directly leading to the injury 
  • Actions taken immediately after the injury

Your employer or their insurance provider will contact the South Dakota Division of Labor and Management to file your claim. Upon accepting liability, the insurance provider or your self-insured employer will begin paying for medical expenses related to your injury. They may also cover wage losses if your injury or illness will prevent you from returning to work within seven (7) days. 

If you feel as though your claim is mishandled or you are not being compensated fairly for your injury or illness, you can speak with a lawyer. The team at Alvine Law Firm handles all types of personal injury and workers’ compensation claims, and they would be happy to discuss your case with you. 

Types of Workplace Injuries Covered

There are a broad range of injuries covered by workers’ compensation laws in South Dakota, including: 

  • Traumatic physical injuries
  • Falls, slips, and trips
  • Machinery accidents
  • Transportation incidents
  • Repetitive stress and overuse injuries
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Tendonitis
  • Muscle strains
  • Occupational illnesses and diseases
  • Exposure to hazardous substances
  • Respiratory conditions
  • Hearing loss

You are encouraged to reach out to a lawyer if you have any questions about qualifying workplace injuries. If you have been denied benefits, you have two (2) years following the injury to file a petition for a hearing. 

Workplace Injury Scenarios and Coverage

There are three main categories of injuries that Sioux Falls workers’ compensation may cover: 

  • Acute injuries from specific accidents, such as burns, broken bones, slip-and-fall accidents, and head injuries.
  • Cumulative injuries from long-term activities, such as disc degeneration, carpal tunnel syndrome, and tendonitis.
  • Mental health conditions related to workplace stress, including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or complex post-traumatic stress disorder (C-PTSD). 

Given the broad range of illnesses, injuries, and disorders covered, it is best to speak with your employer about their insurance coverage. If they do not have coverage, or they do not believe that your case qualifies for benefits, speak with an attorney who will fight for your rights. 

Reporting and Documenting Workplace Injuries

Timely injury reporting is crucial when filing a workers’ compensation claim in Sioux Falls. The First Report of Injury should be filed within one week of the injury. Employees should inform their employers of their injury or illness as soon as possible and provide any medical documentation they have that supports their claim. 

The First Report of Injury (Form 101) is the most important document your employer must submit to the Department of Labor’s Division of Labor and Management. This document includes information such as the date, time, location, and nature of your injury. It is the cornerstone of your employer accepting legal liability for the injury, so their insurance provider can begin making payments.

Medical documentation is also required, including a diagnosis, treatment plan, and any other additional information from a licensed physician. Optional signed witness statements can help support your claim. Your employer should also submit pre-injury wage statements to calculate your potential wage-loss benefits. 

In South Dakota, Codified Law 62-4-43 states that employers must provide reasonable medical attention for work-related injuries. Failure to do so can result in a lawsuit. 

Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Sioux Falls

Benefits for workers’ compensation in Sioux Falls can include reimbursement for medical treatment, including first aid, hospitalization, surgery, prescription drugs, and rehabilitation. You may also be eligible for disability benefits for temporary and permanent injuries. 

Workers’ compensation can also extend to death benefits for the families of individuals who suffered fatal workplace injuries.

Timing is of the essence when it comes to getting workers’ compensation benefits; speak with an experienced lawyer who understands the nuances, challenges and needs of workers’ compensation, personal injury and employee law at the Alvine Law Firm to pursue your case.

Injuries Not Typically Covered by Workers’ Compensation

While many injuries are covered for workers’ compensation in Sioux Falls, there are some exceptions. These include:

  • Self-inflicted injuries
  • Injuries caused under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Injuries sustained during a crime or violation of company policy
  • Injuries that occur outside of work hours or off the job 

You can always speak with an attorney to determine the eligibility of your workers’ compensation claim. There are some cases that may be an exception, and if you want complete clarity on your situation, a lawyer can help. They can also suggest alternatives to workers’ compensation if your case could be treated as a personal injury lawsuit.

The Role of Employers in Preventing Workplace Injuries

Employers are not required to offer workers’ compensation insurance in South Dakota, but that does not mean they are exempt from responsibility. They are required to promote a safe, healthy work environment by providing workplace safety and training programs, performing ergonomic assessments and offering modifications as needed, and performing regular safety audits and compliance checks.

If an employer’s negligence results in your injury or illness, you can pursue reimbursement and compensation with the help of a Sioux Falls personal injury lawyer from Alvine Law Firm. 


Workers’ compensation in Sioux Falls, SD, covers acute injuries and illness as well as chronic injuries and some mental health conditions. Insured employers are responsible for filing the First Report of Injury with the Department of Labor within seven (7) days upon learning about an employee’s injury. 

If you are seeking assistance with your workers’ compensation claim, or if your employer does not carry insurance, please contact the Alvine Law Firm for a free consultation. 

Additional Resources

Workers’ Compensation – South Dakota Department of Labor & Regulation 

South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Laws

South Dakota Department of Labor – Division of Labor Management: 605-773-3681

Safety and Health Program Checklist (PDF) from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration 

Occupational Safety and Health Administration Laws and Regulations

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