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Workers' Compensation 101

If you’ve been injured in a work accident or if you are suffering from a condition caused by your job, here are some of the most important things we think you should know about workers’ compensation law.

  • Workers’ compensation benefits do not depend on fault, in the majority of cases. In other words, even if a work accident is your fault, you should be covered.
  • You can’t sue your employer for a work injury. Just as fault doesn’t matter when it comes to the worker, it doesn’t matter if it’s the employer’s fault either. You can’t sue them for negligence. You can sue a “third party” that isn’t part of the employer if they were negligent and caused your injury.
  • If you have a pre-existing injury, meaning you already had a medical condition prior to your work injury, you should still be covered in most instances.
  • Benefits can include payment of your medical bills, payment for a portion of lost wages and additional compensation if your injury is permanent.
  • You are usually required to notify your employer, within a certain time frame, if you suffer a work injury. Put this notice in writing.
  • The only one looking out for your best interests is you, and hopefully an attorney. Hiring a workers’ compensation attorney is not a requirement, but it’s highly recommended.
  • One of the best things you can do for your case is to be honest about your injury. It’s also a good rule of thumb to not discuss your injury with the insurance company, as their interests are different from yours.
  • Most employers have workers’ compensation insurance, which means that you’ll be dealing with an insurance company when filing a claim for benefits and other aspects of your case.
  • There are deadlines for filing a claim for workers’ compensation. If you miss the deadline, which is also called a statute of limitations, your claim can be denied.
  • The majority of workers’ compensation cases end in settlement, which comes from negotiation with the insurance company. Having an attorney at this stage is especially important, as insurance companies are known for giving low settlement offers to unrepresented workers.

You probably have a million other questions, but hopefully this gives you a good overview. Call us anytime with other questions or for a referral to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. We only refer you to someone who has significant experience and a reputation for passionately representing their clients. If you would like a referral, give us a call at (800) 807-9530 or fill out our online form.