If you have incurred an injury where you work and would like to know whether or not to hire a workers’ compensation attorney rests on the degree of your injury and the general complexity of your cause.
If any of these scenarios describe your cause, then you should obtain an attorney to represent your case as soon as possible:
• Injuries occurred at your workplace are moderate to severe. If your doctor believes your health will not be restored to the state it was before sustaining your injury, you may be merited a permanent partial disability award.
• Your injuries incurred at work are sufficient to require surgery.
• You believe you are unable to resume working at your current job but feel you can work in some role.
• You disagree with an unfavorable decision by your employer or your employer’s insurance company.
• You feel you are not receiving proper benefits or question if additional benefits are available that you could receive.
• Your medical benefits are rejected.
• Your employer disagrees with a verdict produced by your state workers’ comp division.
• You are uncomfortable with the workers’ comp process and want an expert to represent your interests.
If your workplace-induced injuries are serious enough that your life will be forever changed, then a workers’ compensation attorney can support you. Most states offer professional services to those who are unable to return to their jobs due to a job-sustained injury.
Ask for a free consultation
Most attorneys providing assistance in workers’ compensation will offer a complimentary consultation to evaluate your claim. The attorney should be straightforward as far as your need for legal representation and your probability of success if you are considering petitioning a negative decision.
When You Should Hire an Attorney
The instance any intricacies enter your case is when you need to hire an attorney to represent your interests. Here are some examples:
• Your employer refuses your claim, or you fail to receive your benefits in a timely manner. Most individuals injured on the job merely accept the rejection of their claim without appealing. When you hire a workers’ comp attorney, you pay no up-front costs, and you receive the best opportunity to receive a fair settlement for your injuries.
• Your employer makes a settlement that does not cover all your lost wages or medical bills. Even though workers’ comp settlements require judicial approval, judges typically sign off on agreements as long as they are not unduly unfair.
• Your medical issues keep you from returning to your previous job or from performing any work at all. If you have undergone permanent partial or permanent total disability, you may be allowed lifetime weekly payments for your lost wages. These types of case can be very expensive for insurance companies. A knowledgeable workers’ comp attorney is vital in cases concerning permanent injuries or illness.
• You receive Social Security disability benefits. If your workers’ comp settlement is not properly structured, you may receive only a portion of your Social Security benefits. An experienced attorney will be able to draft a settlement agreement in order to minimize this offset.
• Your boss strikes back for filing a workers’ comp claim. If your boss has fired you or reduced your pay or participated in any other form of discrimination since you filed a workers’ comp claim, you should contact a workers’ comp attorney immediately.
When You Do Not Require an Attorney’s Representation
If the injuries you acquired on the job are minor, and you anticipate going back to work with your current employer after recovering for several days or weeks, and you do not anticipate permanent injury you may not need the assistance of an attorney.
For instance, if you sustained a simple injury at work and the workers’ comp insurance company covered your medical bills, a weekly benefit for the time you were off work, and your doctor has cleared you, then you do not need to contact an attorney.