Workman's Comp Laws
By Chris Kramer
Worker's compensation, often referred to as "workman's comp," can provide payments to injured workers. These payments are designed to provide relief for lost income or medical bills related to your injury. If your injury keeps you from working, workman's comp may be a vital financial lifeline.
While worker’s compensation is a common way of taking care of injured workers, the law surrounding workman’s comp can be fraught with many pitfalls for people who seek compensation themselves. Getting what you deserve may not be as simple as completing a form.
Seeking Workman's Compensation
Soon after you are injured, you will likely be contacted by your employer’s insurance company. This is a step where many injured employees make mistakes.
Here are a couple key things to remember when discussing your injury with insurance companies:
- Accepting a quick and easy settlement could cost you in the long run. Consider the initial offer and whether it will cover all of your medical expenses and future lost wages.
- If you do accept a settlement over the phone, you may eliminate your future ability to request more money if you accrue more medical expenses than you expected.
So, what should you do if the insurance company calls? Make sure you gather all the relevant information and understand all your legal rights before you agree to any settlement.
Remember: Agreeing to a settlement may make it difficult or impossible to collect more money later. And because many injuries have lingering side-effects or need a long time to heal, you may face more medical bills than you initially believe.
A personal injury attorney can help inform you of your legal rights under a worker’s compensation claim.
Contact a Local Worker’s Comp Attorney
Worker’s compensation laws are unique to each state, and often involve very specific, complex legal regulations. In order to fully understand these laws, it may be helpful to connect with a local worker's comp attorney.
Before you speak with an attorney, it may help to know a few basic features of workman’s comp law. Some unique features of worker’s compensation include:
- You may be able to secure worker’s compensation even if your on-the-job-injury was your fault. Your own actions don’t necessarily prevent you from seeking compensation
- Technically, worker’s compensation is a form of insurance for your employer that protects them from employee lawsuits. This is why the settlement process can be very tricky- employers deal with these claims often.
- Settlements often include payment for medical expenses, lost wages and other economic losses you might suffer.
- Administrative law judges, as opposed to regular trial judges, often handle workman’s comp claims.
These nuances of worker’s compensation law have created a complex body of regulations. If you have been injured on the job, and would like to learn more about seeking worker’s compensation, speak with a local injury lawyer today.