If you were injured or made ill as a result of employment related activities, or during the course of your work related duties, you may be thinking of filing for workers’ compensation in order to help you cover the costs of medical care, and supplement your wages if you are missing or have missed work. If so, remember that your initial claim must be filed promptly, and you must inform your employer promptly as well. You may wonder whether the process really requires an attorney, or if you can handle your case alone. In certain circumstances, a claim might be so simple that you can file it on your own without an issue. However, there are many times when hiring an attorney will likely be necessary, or at least highly advantageous to you, and can greatly increase your chances of success.
When you need to appeal a denial of benefits
If your initial claim was denied, then you will have the right to file an appeal. The appeal process will often include a hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge, or a panel, depending on the law in your state. Most individuals feel that they need to have an attorney for this process. The process can be complicated, and oftentimes employees do not know what the judge or board are looking for and what they want in the file and from the hearing. An attorney will be able to give a legal review of your claim and be able to tell you where your medical records might be incomplete, or where you may require additional witness evidence or other things to help prove your case. Additionally, your attorney will be able to prepare you if you have to testify. They will let you know what to expect, and help to minimize your hearing day jitters, and the possibility of not having an answer to a question. If there is an expert testifying, your attorney will know how to question the expert.
When your claim is going to be very expensive
If you have very serious injuries or a serious illness that is going to cost a great deal of money and time out of work, you may wish to hire an attorney just because of the likelihood of your costly claim facing pushback from the insurer. The insurer may wish to minimize what they pay out to you, and your attorney will be able to present your claim and argue it so that you increase your chances of getting what you actually need, rather than a fraction of that amount.
When your claim is complicated medically, or difficult to prove
If you have a cumulative injury that occurred over time, an illness, or mental illness that was caused by your work, or if you have a preexisting condition that could complicate the causality between your job and your injury, you should consider speaking with an attorney. Many workers’ compensation claims may be very difficult to prove because of the nature of the injury, and insurers and employers who do not like the cost involved in approving claims will likely find ways to argue against paying for something if there is a possibility of showing the injury might be unrelated to the individual’s job. An attorney can help you understand how the law works, what you will need to show in order to be successful, and how you can make your case.
While not every workers’ compensation claim will need an attorney in order to be successful, if the claim seems a bit complicated, or if it gets denied, you should reach out to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney in order to have your case evaluated.
Contact Stern Law, PLLC for A Free Consultation
At Stern Law, PLLC, we have compassionate and caring attorneys ready to work with you in order to find the best strategy for seeking compensation for your job related injuries. Contact Stern Law, PLLC today at (844) 808-7529 for a free consolation with an experienced attorney.