If you've been injured or become unwell at work, you may be thinking if you should employ a workers compensation attorney San fernando valley. The answer is determined by the severity of your injuries, the overall complexity of your case, and your employer's actions (or its insurance company).
When You Can Almost Certainly Represent Yourself?
As a general rule, if all of the following assertions are true, you may be able to avoid hiring an attorney:
- You were injured at work in a small way, such as a twisted ankle or a cut that required a few stitches.
- Your employer confirms that the injury occurred on the job.
- You missed little or no work as a result of your injury.
- You do not have a pre-existing ailment affecting the same portion of your body as the recent employment injury.
Even in these simple cases, it's a good idea to contact a workers' compensation attorney for a free consultation about your case. The lawyer can guide you through the procedure, warn you of potential hazards, and offer you an honest assessment of your ability to handle the matter on your own.
When Should You Hire A Workers' Compensation Attorney?
When your matter becomes complicated, you should consult with an attorney. Here are some instances of scenarios that necessitate the assistance of a lawyer:
- Your employer dismisses your claim or fails to pay your benefits on time. Employers and workers' compensation insurers often reject legitimate workers' compensation claims, certain that many workers will not appeal. Unfortunately, they are almost always accurate. Hiring a workers' compensation attorney is free (more on that later), and it ensures that you obtain a fair settlement or award for your injuries.
- The settlement offer from your employer does not cover all of your lost pay or medical expenditures. If you are unsure if a settlement offer is enough, do not rely on the workers' compensation court to ensure that you are receiving a fair bargain. Although workers' compensation settlements must be approved by a court, judges will normally sign off on any deal as long as it is not outrageously unjust. Call an attorney if you truly want someone to obtain you the finest deal possible.
- Your medical problems prohibit you from returning to your previous employment, limit what you can do at work, or prevent you from working at all. If you have a lifelong handicap, whether partial or whole, you may be eligible for monthly payments (or a single lump amount) to compensate for lost wages. Insurance companies may be quite expensive in these circumstances, and they will frequently go to any length to avoid paying you what you deserve. In instances involving permanent injuries or sickness, a skilled workers' compensation attorney is crucial.
- You are currently receiving or intend to apply for Social Security disability payments. If your settlement is not correctly structured, your workers' compensation benefits might drastically reduce your Social Security disability payments. An expert attorney will know how to construct your settlement agreement so that this offset is minimized or eliminated.
- Your supervisor retaliates against you because you filed a workers' compensation claim. If your employer has dismissed you, demoted you, cut your hours, lowered your pay, or engaged in any other type of discrimination as a result of your workers' compensation claim, call a workers' comp attorney right once to defend your legal rights.
- You were wounded as a result of the activities of a third party or your employer's significant misbehavior. Workers' compensation was created to avoid legal litigation for workplace injuries. However, you may sue outside of workers' compensation if someone other than your employer contributed to your injury (for example, a careless motorist who hit you while you were driving for work), your company does not have workers' comp insurance, or your employer knowingly caused your injury. An expert lawyer can explain how the law relates to your specific circumstances.
What A Good Workers' Compensation Attorney Can Do For You?
An experienced attorney will know how to gather the information required to support your case, negotiate successfully with the insurance company, and craft a settlement agreement to minimize unintended repercussions, in addition to making sure you complete all of the essential documents and fulfill the deadlines.
If you and your spouse are unable to reach an agreement, an attorney can help you prepare for and defend yourself at the hearing or trial.
Find out what a competent workers' compensation lawyer should do and what to look for in a workers' compensation lawyer.