Workers’ compensation is meant to protect workers who are hurt on the job. Nearly all employers are required to carry this benefit. So it can be shocking and discouraging for workers who are injured in their workplace when their employer and their insurance company denies them the benefits they were relying on.
If your employer rejects or minimizes the compensation owed to you through workers’ compensation, or rushes you to return to work before you’re healed up, it may be time to get in touch with a Morgan & Morgan attorney.
With over two decades of experience helping employees recover workers’ compensation benefits, our workers’ compensation attorney understand the tactics employers and their insurance companies use to reduce the compensation paid to workers who were hurt on the job.
Sometimes, they will try to maximize the extent of your injuries; others have claimed that an injury was the result of a preexisting condition, disqualifying you from receiving benefits.
Our attorneys in Savannah work with medical and workplace injury experts to demonstrate both how severe your injury is and how it was caused by an accident at work. We know what it takes to help you in times like these.
If you or a loved has suffered an injury at work in Savannah, we can help. To learn what our Savannah Workers’ Compensation Attorneys may be able to do for you, please fill out our free case evaluation form today.
How an Attorney Can Help After a Workplace Injury
The process that comes after getting injured on the job can be a long and complicated one. Here are some of the steps of getting workers’ compensation that a Morgan & Morgan attorney in Savannah can help you with:
File a Claim: To qualify for benefits, you need to report the injury to your employer within 30 days of the accident. An attorney can help you complete the paperwork, the forms and questionnaires that must be filed out in your report. While they do this, you can focus on your recovery.
Evaluate Your Injuries: Our attorneys often work with medical experts to help evaluate the extent of your injuries. Using this evaluation in tandem with your required independent medical examination, we can help you seek damages to compensate you for the injuries you suffered. Generally, under workers’ compensation the employer is required to pay for all necessary medical treatments and rehabilitation resulting from a workplace injury — our evaluations help make sure they do.
File an Appeal: Hopefully your claim will be quick and painless, and you get the workers’ compensation benefits you deserve. But sometimes, your appeal can be denied for invalid reasons. There are many instances of an employer or insurance company denying a workers’ compensation claim on the basis that an injury was caused by a preexisting condition.
In the appeals process, you have the right to a hearing, where your attorney can present your case to a judge. He or she can present evidence to the judge, such as medical records, expert testimony on your medical condition, or a witness testimony. The judge often makes their decision within 30 days of the hearing. If they also deny your claim, your case can still have a chance with an appeal in the Georgia court system.
Handle Mediation: In some cases, a workers’ compensation claim is settled out of court through mediation. At the mediation, your workers’ compensation attorney can present evidence to an independent, third-party mediator who will try to facilitate a settlement.
Options for Additional Compensation
In addition to all of these methods of help, a Morgan & Morgan workers’ compensation lawyer can also help you to be aware of other ways to get compensated for your injury. Workers’ compensation is generally the exclusive way an employee can seek any compensation after a workplace injury. However, in some instances third-party lawsuits are possible.
In a third-party lawsuit, you can attempt to seek damages against a party other than your employer. For example, if a defective piece of machinery or equipment was involved in your accident, a third-party lawsuit could be possible against the manufacturer of the defective equipment.
The other way you could potentially get additional compensation is if your employer retaliates against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim. This could possibly result in a separate lawsuit against the employer; for example, if their retaliation is to fire you, you could have a wrongful termination case.
Independent Medical Examination
To qualify for workers’ compensation benefits, your must take an independent medical exam (IME). An IME is conducted to evaluate the extent of your injuries and determine whether it was caused by a workplace accident. Insurance companies, however, sometimes use the IME to minimize payouts.
The insurance company hires the doctor who will conduct the IME. In some cases though, the doctors, rather than being independent, are biased in order protect the financial interests of the insurance companies that hire them.
An attorney will work to ensure that you receive an accurate and unbiased diagnosis of your injuries. If your claim is denied as a result of a biased IME, your attorney may get a second opinion from another physician to prevent the chance of any inaccuracies.
Contact Our Attorneys Today
Our Savannah workers’ compensation attorneys have helped countless people get the benefits they deserve for their injuries. If you or a loved one suffered an injury on the job in Savannah, we can help. To find out what our workers’ compensation attorneys may be able to do for you, please fill out our free case evaluation form today.