Your employer provides a valuable resource for you if you get injured at work. Workers' comp is provided to employees at no charge, and you are covered from your very first moment of work. If you do get injured, you can expect a variety of benefits from complete payment of medical expenses to a partial reimbursement of your wages while you stay home and get better. Once you have done your part and informed your supervisor about your injury, however, you may begin to suspect that your claim is not going to be successful. Read on to find out when it may be time to take action by calling in a workers' comp attorney.
You are not receiving medical benefits. It's vital that you seek medical attention for your injury and that you inform the medical facility that your injury is work related. The billing and even the care you receive may be different if your injury falls into the workers' comp bucket. If you have had to pay for medical care resulting from an on-the-job injury or illness from your own funds or with your own health insurance, you may need to take action. Additionally, your employer is required to allow you to take time off to seek medical care and to take all the time needed for your recovery. Your employer must follow your doctor's instructions; they cannot arbitrarily force you to return to work. On the other hand, if your injury is not severe enough to require a trip to the doctor or to the emergency room, then you likely don't need workers' comp benefits.
You have suffered a severe, catastrophic, or permanent injury. Work can be a dangerous place, and when severe injuries occur, they can be devastating. If you have suffered from an extraordinarily severe injury, you may need to take legal action to obtain a fair settlement. Some types of injuries result in permanent impairments and make it likely that you will never be able to return to your job, or any job, again. Some of these include:
- Amputations of limbs
- Brain injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Severe burns
- Toxic chemical exposure (such as asbestos)
These types of injuries can result in prolonged hospital stays, multiple surgeries, and a devastating effect on the worker's family. Earning on a portion of the pre-injury wages for a lifetime is simply not an option, and you are entitled to a fair settlement to compensate you for the pain and suffering and loss of income suffered.
You are having a difficult time proving injury. Not all injuries happen in an instant; some are the result of an accumulation of harmful motions, exposure, and more. You should know, however, that no matter how long ago you first became exposed to a dangerous condition, you have a right to workers' comp coverage as long as you alert your supervisor as soon as you know that your condition is work related. For example, carpal-tunnel syndrome can happen gradually over week or months but can be incredibly debilitating to those who must use their hands and wrists in their work, such as computer users and small assembly workers. These types of injuries can sometimes be more challenging to prove, so the help of a workers' comp attorney is advisable.
If your workers' comp claim is not being taken seriously, or if you are having trouble with an approval, contact a workers' comp attorney, such as one from Shaw Leslie Law Office, as soon as possible.