Worker Comp

Hiring a Workers’ Comp Attorney: 10 Essential Pros and Cons

Have you faced a workplace injury in the recent past and fought for Compensation? The task of handling the compensation claims is not very easy. Although it brings with it a lot of benefits for the affected, it is still very hard to handle. It requires the help of professionals who are proficient in its complexities. Once you have decided hiring a workers’ comp attorney, it can become really easy for you.

It is the right solution to the legal complexities of hiring a workers’ comp attorney. Besides, the pros and cons are significant because you can get the best outcomes. Workers’ Compensation helps in making compensation against medical costs, lost wages, and rehabilitation. This article will highlight all aspects related to hiring a worker’s comp attorney can help and what are its pros and cons.

Table of Contents

How Can Workplace Injuries Affect Life?

Workplace injuries affect the physical and mental life of victims. Sometimes it can be a challenge to deal with such workplace pain, disability, and stress. In addition to this they may suffer from mental issues are anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Depression

Depression is very common among injured workers. They usually suffer from depression if the injury has caused any kind of disability. The decrease in the usual schedule and interactions with other people, as well as the absence of meaningful activities, cause a pessimistic mood. A workers’ comp attorney can and should help clients find mental health care and other types of help.

PTSD

Severe cases of workplace mishaps cause PTSD, which entails reliving the incident, nightmares, and fear. The workers’ comp lawyers can fight for the provision of mental health treatment as part of the compensation claim, hence promoting the inclusion of psychological afflictions as forms of injuries.

Why Workers Comp Is Crucial to Employees?

Workers’ compensation helps those employees who have a claim of injury or sickness arising from work-place accidents. If you are one such employee it will help you get the financial support when a person is fighting hard against the complications arising from medical expenses, lack of employment income among other aspects; in some cases, even the cost of treatment. Realizing such potential is a clear motivation why there is a need to understand the proper way of handling the claims process.

1. Medical Coverage

Medical treatment is an essential part of workers’ Compensation. This includes expenses for surgeries, doctors’ fees, drugs, physiotherapy, and any other treatment that may be deemed fit to manage the injury. Thus, without these benefits, injured workers could experience serious fiscal hardships as a consequence of expensive medical care.

2. Wage Replacement

Workers’ Compensation provides the injured employees monetary benefits in the form of payment of a part of his wages. It can reduce the economic pressure after the employee is not able to continue the responsibilities due to injury. The wage replacement turns out to be a help in handling household’s economic needs during the healing process.

3. Rehabilitation Services

Sometimes, workers’ Compensation entails vocational rehabilitation services. These services assist injured workers in getting back to work by offering training, education, and employment. If you are planning to change your occupation or switch the workplace after the injuries, you can try hiring a workers’ comp attorney.

The Current State of the Law on Workers’ Compensation

The workers’ compensation laws are different in every state. If you have suffered any workplace injury then to get the comp it is important to know about the laws regarding your state.

State-Specific Regulations

It must be noted that workers’ compensation laws are state-specific statutory laws. Each state has its own laws and statutes concerning workers’ Compensation. These laws cover the injuries that are compensable. They also take care of the manner in which the claims are filed for Compensation, and the amount of Compensation. Hiring a worker’s compensation attorney can be helpful as they are well aware of the state wise laws regarding workers’ comp.

Federal Workers’ Compensation Programs

Besides the state programs, there are federal workers’ compensation programs for certain occupational groups, including federal government employees and certain maritime and railroad employees. Such programs are quite complex, and only a workers’ compensation attorney can explain the details.

Employer Responsibilities

Employers are responsible for maintaining a safe working environment. If employers are not fulfilling their responsibilities, the law holds them responsible. After hiring a workers’ comp attorney the employers can help the employers in meeting his or her obligations.

The Function of Workers’ Compensation Attorney

hiring a workers' comp attorney

A workers’ compensation attorney handles cases related to employee Compensation. They offer legal services, counseling, and support during the claim so that their clients get the right benefits in accordance with the law.

When Should I Think of Hiring A Workers’ Comp Attorney?

1. Severity of Injury

The complexity of the injury may determine whether or not you think of hiring a workers’ comp attorney to seek the professional services of a lawyer. Some smaller injuries with clear-cut cases may not even require the services of a lawyer. But for serious injuries or complicated cases, the services of an attorney will be quite helpful.

2. Complexity of the Case

Some situations that may require the services of a lawyer include conflicting claims, multiple clients with injuries, and huge financial losses. Due to these complexities, an attorney is more likely to be able to do this than the worker himself or herself.

3. Employer’s Cooperation

Make sure you know about the relationship between the employer and the insurance company. If the employer is not cooperative or the insurance company will not pay the claim find the services of a lawyer who can defend you.

4. Availability of Legal Assistance

You should also check for the availability of the legal aid in their locality. It can be an important factor in determining who you can choose.

How to Choose the Right Lawyer?

1. Experience and Specialization

Check the experience and area of specialization. Find an attorney who has experience in workers’ Compensation and is solely focused on this area of law.

2. Reputation and Reviews

Check the attorney’s track record and customer feedback. This can shed light on the percentage of closed cases, work ethic, and customer satisfaction.

3. Initial Consultation

Most lawyers provide the first consultation without charging the client a fee. This is the right time to bring up your case, ask your questions and determine if the attorney is suitable for you.

4. Fee Structure

Check how much will the attorney charge. Many of the workers’ comp attorneys operate on the basis of contingency fees. Nevertheless, it is best to ascertain any possibilities of expenses and how they will be charged against your wages.

5. Communication and Availability

Effective communication is essential. Select an attorney who is easily available, quick to respond to your calls or emails, and will update you more on your case.

Also Check: What Workers Comp Lawyers Won’t Tell You: 11 Facts to Shock

The Pros

1. Proficiency in the Area of Workers’ Compensation Law.

Hiring a workers’ compensation attorney means you are in safe hands and someone who knows all about the law and legal system is providing you help.  They know the nature of workers’ compensation law. They can work their way through the system easily, thus raising the chances of getting the claim through.

2. Higher Probability of Getting the Claim Approved

The probability of a claim approval is higher after hiring a workers’ comp attorney. They can help you in proper filing of the documents so you can meet all deadlines successfully. There is no chance of missing any document during submission.

3. Negotiating Fair Settlements

The attorneys who practice workers’ Compensation are excellent negotiators. They can negotiate enough damages for their clients, which will help them get the right amount of Compensation for the effects of their injuries. This is especially so if the insurance company is likely to pay a small claim to the client.

4. Handling Complex Legal Procedures

Workers’ Compensation is a legal process, and many people trying to claim may find it rather complicated. These procedures include filing motions, collecting evidence, and appearing for clients during hearings, and an attorney can assist in making the process less stressful for the injured worker.

5. Medical and Vocational Evaluations and Consultations

Workers’ comp attorneys have a list of physicians, psychiatrists, and vocational experts. Hiring a workers’ comp attorney can help with the case. These experts can be of much help in proving the level of an injury. They can also tell how it handicaps the worker from performing his/her duties.

6. Appealing Denied Claims

Hiring a workers’ comp attorney can help you in appealing against the denial decision. They know all about the procedure for appealing. Hence, they would prepare a proper case to present in front of the court to get the denial reversed.

The Cons

1. Legal Fees and Costs

Unfortunately, one of the main disadvantages of hiring a workers’ comp attorney is the issue of payment. Although many lawyers still take cases on contingency—that is, they get paid only if you win your case—legal costs may still be high and will affect the final settlement or award.

2. Chances of Litigation Taking a Long Time

It is possible that hiring a workers’ comp attorney will result in the case being dragged out, whether the case is complex or the employer or insurance company fighting the claim. This can result in the necessary benefits being paid later than expected and thus prove stressful for the injured employee.

3. Claimant loses control over the claim

Some employees are usually afraid of losing control of their claims by involving the services of an attorney. The attorney will take care of almost everything in the case. Hiring a workers’ comp attorney is a good thing but you may feel you are not really involved in the process.

4. Risk of Unsatisfactory Outcomes

Hiring a workers’ comp attorney who is an expert does not assure that you will definitely win the case. You may have to face rejection. In some instances you may have to opt for settlement which is not acceptable at times.

Conclusion

There are several benefits of hiring a workers’ comp lawyer but we cannot ignore the drawbacks too. They can greatly increase the probability of a favorable outcome and obtain a proper settlement. However, the above has its downsides in terms of costs, time-consuming court procedures, and lack of control. Therefore, one is advised to consider the level of the case, the extent of the injury, and one’s preference. Thus, considering all these factors, an injured worker can make the right decision for herself or himself.

FAQs

Q: Who is a workers comp lawyer?

He is an expert lawyer who practices workers’ compensation law and helps employees file for Compensation. They deal with documentation, bargain compensations, and appear for clients in hearings and appeals.

Q: When do I need hiring a workers’ comp attorney?

You need an attorney if your case is too complicated or the injuries are too severe. In addition to this you will need a lawyer to handle the problems with insurance company or the employer.

Q: Can I manage the workers’ comp claim by myself?

Yes, you can manage the claim on your own. However, you can get the desired results with the help of the legal experts.  The assistance is important especially when the matter is too complex.

Q: What can I do if the workers’ comp claim is denied?

After receiving the denial you can think of hiring a workers’ comp attorney. He will help you in filing an appeal of the decision. The attorneys will get all the necessary documents and then will submit those in the court to fight the denial.

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