Work Injury Personal Injury Claims

Work Injury Personal Injury Claims

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Work Injury Personal Injury Claims

When you’re injured while at work or in the course of your employment, it can be a terrifying experience. Over half of Americans have very little money saved—approximately 56 percent have less than $5,000—and if they get injured at work, it often leaves them in a very precarious situation. Most workers lack the means to get by for even a short period of time if they are injured on their job. 

At Morgan & Morgan, we truly understand the difficulties you face if you are injured while working. We’ve been handling injury claims for our clients for decades, and we fully understand the work injury claims process. We want to do whatever we can to make sure you get the compensation you need. It’s essential that you educate yourself on the process so you know exactly what to do if you find yourself injured while working. Contact Morgan & Morgan today for a free case evaluation, and we can get you connected with an attorney near you.

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Get answers to commonly asked questions about our legal services and learn how we may assist you with your case.

  • How to File a Worker’s Compensation Claim

    If you’re injured while working or doing something job-related, it’s important to know how to file a workers’ comp claim. The more knowledgeable you are about the process, the more likely you are to be successful in your claim. It always makes sense to contact an attorney if you’re injured at work so they can help you receive the compensation you’re entitled to. The following are steps you should take to file a worker’s compensation claim.

    1. Medical Care

    Anytime you are injured, especially if it’s in the course of your employment, you should get medical attention as soon as possible. Not only is it crucial to make sure that you get the care you need, but it’s also essential for there to be a paper trail of how you were injured and what you did as a result of that injury. In some cases, this might mean going to the emergency room. In other cases, your injury might be less emergent, and you can wait and see a doctor or a specialist over the course of a few days. Regardless, you should always make sure you get medical attention if you are injured while at work. 

    2. Report Your Injury 

    The first thing you want to do if you are injured while at work is report your injury to your employer. This is a critical piece of the work injury claims process. You need to make sure that your employer is aware of the injury. If you speak with your employer in person, always follow up with an email so that everything is in writing and appropriately documented. In most cases, you are required to report your injury to your employer within a set number of days. The timeline changes depending on which state you work in. For example, in New York, you must notify your employer within 30 days. If you are ever unsure about how much time in which you have to report the injury, contact a personal injury lawyer right away so they can help you find out. Most reputable personal injury firms will offer you a free case consultation, so it shouldn’t cost you anything to get immediate advice.

    3. See the Correct Doctors

    After you’ve received any medical attention that you need and notify your employer of your injury, you should check with your employer to see if there are specific medical professionals that you have to see. Sometimes you will have to see an approved doctor in order to file for a workers’ comp successfully. Again, it’s always necessary to get everything in writing. If you speak with your employer in person, always follow up with an email.

    4. Provide Paperwork

    After you report your injury to your employer, the work injury claims process can begin. In order to collect workers’ compensation, you will be required to provide your employer with paperwork. They should make available to you all of the necessary paperwork for the workers’ injury claims process. After filling out the forms, your employer is usually responsible for submitting the forms to their insurance company and the state workers’ compensation agency. You will need to provide information about your injury and the treatment you receive, but the documents you will need to fill out and the exact process that takes place will vary state by state.  For this reason, you should seriously consider speaking with a lawyer before you start this process.

    5. Wait for a Decision.

    After your employer submits all of your completed paperwork, the insurance company should make a decision about your claim. They will either approve it or deny it. The number of days it will take for a decision to be made will depend on what state you’re in. For example, in Pennsylvania, your employer or the insurance company has 21 days to decide whether to approve or deny your claim.

  • Filing a Lawsuit Against Your Employer

    The work injury claims process can be a bit confusing, especially when it comes to whether you can file a lawsuit or not. In most circumstances, you are not permitted to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer if you are injured at work. Most state workers’ compensation laws limit an employer’s liability when an employee is injured. Instead, you are usually required to submit a workers’ compensation claim. This means that even if your employer wasn’t at fault for your injury, you may still be able to receive compensation. The laws generally shield employers from lawsuits in most cases. However, there are some circumstances in which you will be able to file a lawsuit against your employer.

    1. Your Employer Intentionally Caused Your Injury

    In some states, if you can prove that your employer intentionally caused your injury, you are permitted to file a lawsuit against them.

    2. Your Employer Was Grossly Negligent

    In some instances, if you can prove that you suffered an injury because your employer was grossly negligent, you can file a lawsuit against them. Gross negligence is usually defined as the extreme indifference to or reckless disregard for the safety of others. 

    3. You Were Injured by a Product That Your Employer Manufactured

    If you were injured by a product that your employer actually manufactured, you might be able to file a lawsuit against them. In this case, you’d file it under the theory of products liability. This is different than if you were using a piece of equipment while you were at work.

    4. You Are an Independent Contractor

    If you work as an independent contractor, then the company you are working for isn’t technically your employer. For this reason, you may not be entitled to workers’ comp benefits, and your employer does not have immunity from a lawsuit. 
    This varies by state, so consult with an attorney because the work injury claims process can be challenging to comprehend fully. If you were injured at work and meet any of the criteria stated directly above, you should consult with a personal injury lawyer immediately because you may be able to file a lawsuit instead of a workers’ compensation claim.

  • What Happens After I File My Claim?

    Generally, once you’ve reported your injury and filed your workers’ comp claim, the insurance company will begin an investigation and then make a decision as to whether your claim is approved or denied. Insurance companies often look for any kind of loophole so that they don’t have to pay out the worker’s comp claim. That’s why it’s so important to contact an attorney to help you with your claim before you submit it.

  • Why Was My Claim Denied?

    Without knowing the specifics of your situation and seeing the paperwork you submitted, we can’t say why your claim was denied. The work injury claims process is definitely confusing, so it’s easy to make small mistakes. Common reasons that worker’s comp claims are denied include the following:

    Not Job Related

    If your employer claims that your injury is not job-related and the insurance company agrees with that assessment, they will not pay out any compensation for a worker’s comp claim. For example, if your injury took place on the way to work or going home from work, or even during a lunch break, there’s a possibility that your claim might not be approved.

    Statute of Limitations

    If you failed to report your injury to your employer on time or your claim was not submitted before the statute of limitations expired, your claim will likely be denied. This is why it’s so important to make sure you report any injuries immediately.

    You Failed to Seek Medical Attention

    If you are trying to file a workers’ compensation claim but you didn’t seek medical attention for your injury, it’s unlikely that your claim will be successful. Regardless of how severe or minor your injury is, you should always seek medical attention so that you have the option to prove you were injured which will then allow you to go through the work injury claims process and file a workers’ comp claim if it comes to that.

    Your Employer Says You Were Intoxicated

    If you injured yourself at work, but you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, it’s highly unlikely that you will be successful with your claim.

    Paperwork Error

    In some cases, your claim might be denied because you simply filled out a form incorrectly or forgot to include required information. This is usually easy to remedy.
    There are many reasons why your claim could be denied, but the ones listed above are some of the most common ones. If you’ve already submitted a claim and it was denied, contact Morgan & Morgan. We can help you determine if you can appeal your claim and what your chances of success are.

  • What Doesn’t Workers’ Comp Cover?

    Typically, workers’ comp won’t provide you with any compensation in the following circumstances:

    •        Your injury was self-inflicted
    •        Your injury was due to intoxication
    •        You’re seeking compensation for stress or psychiatric issues
    •        Your injury occurred while you were commuting to or from work
    •        Your injury occurred while you were committing a crime or violating company policies
  • Morgan & Morgan Can Help

    If you were injured while working, you should contact an attorney immediately. There are deadlines for reporting your injury and for filing your workers’ compensation claim. The work injury claims process can be confusing, so you want to make sure you don’t miss any steps. It could be the difference between being paid what you’re owed and receiving absolutely nothing. Morgan & Morgan has more than 1,000 attorneys across the United States, so no matter where you were injured, we can help you. We have recovered more than ten billion dollars for our clients. Contact us today for a free case evaluation

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