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When You Should Hire a Workers’ Compensaion Attorney
If you have an injury or illness due to work-related reasons, you may be mulling over hiring a workers’ compensation attorney or handling your case alone. The answer depends on a lot of things, mainly the severity of your condition, the general complexity of your case, and your employer’s or its insurer’s actions.
Generally, if all of the following are true for you, you may not have to hire a lawyer:
> Your workplace injury is minor (for example, a small cut or a twisted ankle)
> Your employer acknowledges that your injury was a result of work.
> The injury did not make a significant difference in your ability to work.
> You don’t have a pre-existing condition that may have been worsened by the recent work-related injury.
On the other hand, below are a few sample situations where the role of a workers’ compensation attorney becomes crucial:
> Your employer doesn’t pay your benefits right or denies your claim outright.
Employers and their insurers routinely decline workers’ compensation claims, believing workers will not appeal. And the sad fact is, they’re usually correct. There’s no need to pay a workers’ comp attorney anything upfront, and your chances of getting a fair settlement or award is highest.
> Your employer offers settlement that only partially covers your lost wages or medical bills.
If you’re unsure about a settlement offer being good enough, don’t put your complete trust in the compensation judge in terms of giving you a fair deal. Workers’ comp settlements do require judicial approval, but usually, judges will just sign off an agreement if it is not grossly unjust. If you really want someone who will fight for your interests, hire a lawyer
> Your medical condition has made you completely unable to perform your previous work, or partially to a significant extent.
If you’ve suffered a total or partial permanent injury, you can get a lump sum payment or weekly payments to cover your lost wages. Because cases like these are very expensive for insurance companies, they will do everything in their power not to have to pay what you rightly deserve. To give a good fight, hire a reputable workers’ comp attorney.
> You are receiving or planning to apply for Social Security disability benefits.
If your workers’ comp settlement is not properly structures, you could end up with considerably lower Social Security disability payments. An experienced lawyer can help you avoid this problem.
These are only a few of the scenarios where a workers’ comp lawyer’s expertise can make or break your case. To be safe, don’t hesitate to consult one so you can talk about the possibilities relative to your specific case.