If you’ve been injured at work, then you may consider getting a workers comp lawyer. But before you do so, realize that there are times when it is possible to represent yourself. If your workplace injury is minor or your employer admits it’s work-related, then you probably don’t need an attorney. Plus, if your company has a competent human resources department, you might be covered. But there are definitely times when retaining a workers comp lawyer is in your best interest. Especially if your injury is severe, or your case is complex.
When Would I Need a Workers Comp Lawyer?
There are multiple situations that require a workers comp lawyer. Here are just a few:
- You have pre-existing conditions. Pre-existing conditions make it difficult to tell what part of your injury/illness is work-related. If the injury/illness has to do with your pre-existing condition, you need a lawyer.
- Your injury results in a permanent partial or total disability. This requires an attorney, since you need long-term workers’ comp, disability benefits, or both.
- Your doctors can’t agree. Sometimes your doctor and the workers’ comp provider your company makes you see will disagree. This can disrupt your treatment, forcing you back to work too soon. A workers comp lawyer can buy you time to rest and recover.
- You wish to appeal a denied claim. Insurers often reject legitimate workers’ comp claims. Why? They know the worker won’t appeal. An attorney is vital whenever you appeal a claim denial.
- Your employer’s settlement isn’t enough. If your settlement won’t cover all lost wages or medical bills, you need a workers comp lawyer. All workers’ comp settlements need judicial approval. But most judges will agree to nearly anything that’s not extremely unfair. An attorney can get the most money possible.
- Your boss retaliates. If your boss fires or demotes you, reduces your hours or pay, or discriminates against you, get an attorney. Retaliation is illegal, and an attorney can help.
- You have a potential third-party claim. If a third party contributed to your illness/injury, legally, you can sue. Because this is much more complex, you’ll need an attorney.
- You receive Social Security disability benefits. Do you get Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)? If so, you must pay taxes on your WC pay. The workers comp offset program also reduces your benefits. An attorney can help minimize this offset.
In Some Cases, You May Not Need a Workers Comp Lawyer
Not all claims require an attorney. However, any added level of complexity makes consulting one a smart move. They’ll help you recover the compensation you deserve and structure an ideal benefit plan. Doing so will allow you to rest and recover, so you can return to work as soon as possible.
You May Qualify for Free Legal Assistance With Your Claim
We can match you with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney for free, confidential advice. Maybe you want a second, unbiased opinion about your case. Or perhaps you need someone to help you during the appeals process. Either way, an experienced workers comp lawyer is always your best option.
Ready to see if you may qualify? Click the button below to start your free online benefits evaluation now!