Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Comp Claims
Am I eligible for workers’ compensation benefits?
If you have been injured at your job and the injury is work related, then you should receive workers’ compensation benefits.
What steps should I take if I am injured at work?
If you are injured at work, you should follow the following steps:
- Report your injury to your supervisor immediately
- Seek treatment for your injury as soon as possible
- Have your doctor provide written work restrictions if necessary
- Submit these work restrictions to your employer
- Document all medical expenses incurred for treatment of your work injury
- Keep your employer informed of your continued inability to work
- Contact an attorney to assist you in handling your claim
What benefits are available to me?
If you have been injured at work and have been approved for workers’ compensation, you will generally receive the following benefits:
- Payment of the medical expenses for your medical care (including emergency treatment, follow-up care, physical therapy, etc.)
- Payment of expenses incurred for travel to and from doctor’s offices, physical therapy appointments, etc.
- Payment of a percentage of your earnings (typically 66% of your average weekly wage) for the period of your disability
- Payment of a lump sum or weekly benefit amount in the event your injury results in a permanent physical impairment, or in the event you are permanently disabled from working in any capacity
- And Payment of benefits in the event of death
When do benefits become available?
Disability begins on the first day you are unable to work. However, wage loss payments are not paid for the first three days after your disability begins. In the event you are unable to work, even if intermittently, for ten days or more, you will be paid wage loss benefits from the first day of your disability.
An insurer is required to begin paying wage loss benefits within 14 days from the time that your employer is notified of your work injury. You will receive your benefits at the same intervals as you received your regular paychecks.
Do I need an attorney?
Employers and insurance companies are looking out for their own best interests. They want to close a claim as quickly as possible and to pay as little as possible. Therefore, they may encourage you not to hire a lawyer. Workers compensation laws were created to protect the rights of an injured worker.
However, the system is full of complexities, specifications and time limits. If not followed carefully, you may lose benefits available to you. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney will help protect your rights and assist you in getting the compensation to which you are entitled.
How do I pay for an attorney?
You may be worried about how you will pay for an attorney, especially when you are not working. There is no fee to retain our services. State laws provide limits on attorney’s fees in workers’ compensation cases. We are compensated on a contingent fee basis, and we receive payment after workers’ compensation benefits are awarded to you.
What obstacles are there when collecting my workers’ compensation benefits?
Most workers’ compensation claims are paid without any problems. However, situations can arise that need the help of an experienced attorney.
If any of the following situations arise, you should consider retaining a workers’ compensation attorney:
- Your employer contests or rejects your claim. Many employers reject claims hoping that the employee will choose not to pursue the matter further. You are entitled to compensation.
- If you lose your job for whatever reason, as work comp wage loss benefits and vocational rehab assistance may be available to you.
- If your employer offers to compensate you in an amount insufficient to cover the injury or disability you have suffered.