When to Hire a Workers’ Comp Lawyer After an Injury on the Job
If you’ve suffered an injury on the job and are trying to decide if you should hire an attorney, the most important factors to consider are the nature and severity of your injury and any potentially complicating factors involved with your claim.
In general, you probably won’t need to consult an attorney if all the following elements apply to your case:
- Your injury was minor, such as a small cut or a twisted ankle
- You missed little to no work as a result of your injury
- Your employer agrees the injury happened in the workplace
- You do not have any pre-existing conditions
On the other hand, if your case is at all complicated or involves more serious injuries, it’s imperative that you seek the assistance of an experienced workers’ comp attorney. Below are examples of scenarios that necessitate legal counsel:
Your employer denies your claim or you do not receive benefits promptly
Employers and insurance companies often reject claims for workers’ compensation, believing injured workers will not appeal the decision. They are right in this regard, as nearly 80 percent of people who are hurt at work do not appeal when their claims get denied. Consulting an attorney can help you successfully navigate the appeals process so you do not have to accept the initial decision of your employer or an insurer.
The offer you receive does not cover your medical expenses or lost wages
You do not have to accept the initial settlement offer you receive. If you are not getting a fair deal and your settlement offer does not cover your expenses, you may work with a workers’ comp attorney to engage in negotiations so you can get the best possible outcome.
You cannot return to your job because of your medical issues
If your workplace injury caused permanent partial or permanent total disability, you may be entitled to receive weekly payments recoup your lost wages. Because these cases can be extremely expensive for insurance companies, they will fight back as hard as they can. It’s important to have a skilled lawyer advocating on your behalf.
Your boss retaliates against you for filing the claim
If your employer demotes you, fires you, cuts your hours or pay or engages in any other form of retaliation or discrimination after you’ve filed a workers’ compensation claim, you must seek the assistance of an attorney to rectify the situation. By law, employers cannot retaliate against an employee for seeking workers’ comp benefits.
If you have suffered a workplace injury, be sure to consult a dedicated South Carolina workers’ comp attorney with The Rembert Law Firm right away.