Legal Guide

Workers Compensation Claim: When Should You Lawyer Up?

If you have suffered a work-related injury, you may be wondering whether you should hire a workers compensation attorney or handle the situation yourself. Work-related injuries can be minor, and others can be severe, depending on the situation. There are some situations you can deal with by yourself, but at times you need to engage a lawyer to help you get the compensation you deserve. Whether you should hire a lawyer depends on the severity of the injury, the actions of the employer, and the complexity of the case.

Here are some situations when you can easily represent yourself:

  • you've suffered a minor injury such as a cut that requires a few stitches or a twisted ankle.
  • The employer admits that the injury is work-related.
  • You never missed work or missed a few days due to the accident or injury.
  • You have no preexisting medical condition affecting the same part of your body injured during the work-related accident. For instance, a back injury that was there before you slipped or fell and hurt your back at work.

Even if it is a minor work-related injury, it is vital to consult with a workers compensation attorney to walk you through the claiming process, inform you of the potential challenges and give you a genuine opinion on whether you can manage the case by yourself.

When to lawyer up

The moment you sense complexity in your work-related claim is when you should seek the help of an attorney. Workers’ compensation lawyers are beneficial if your injuries are not clearly work-related, you require extensive medical care, you need to take a long period off work, you suffered a permanent disability, or the situation is generally complicated. Here are the situations when a lawyer is very necessary.

You are in dispute with the insurance company.

If you are in dispute with the workers' compensation insurance provider, then a workers compensation attorney is very necessary. They can help you gather enough evidence, including hiring expert witnesses, requesting an independent medical examination, etc., to argue your case.

Your worker's claim is denied.

An insurance company may claim that you filed your worker's compensation claim too late or that your injury is not work-related; therefore, they deny your claim. Thankfully, with the help of a workers' compensation attorney, you can appeal the denial through the workers' compensation system. A lawyer can help you get through the legal process.

The injury has impacted your working ability.

If the work-related injury has affected your ability to work again, it means that you need to maximize your worker's compensation benefits. A lawyer can help you structure them in a way that will fit nicely into your future and get the reasonable amount you deserve.

The settlement doesn't cover all your medical bills and lost wages

If you feel that the settlement your employer or insurance company has offered is not enough, you need to seek the guidance of a lawyer.

The bottom line

Workers' compensation claims can be complicated, so you should immediately lawyer up to avoid unexpected consequences, whether a minor or major work-related injury.

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