When Should You Hire a Portland Workers' Comp Attorney?
If you have been injured on the job in Portland, Oregon, the first you thing you should do is to get medical treatment. As soon as possible, though, you should also look into hiring a Portland workers' comp attorney. Workers' compensation can be confusing, and you will need someone to work on your behalf while you are recovering.
Workers' Compensation Laws in Oregon
In Oregon, workers' compensation laws may entitle you to certain benefits when you have been hurt on the job or develop job-related occupational diseases. Those benefits can include temporary partial or total disability and permanent partial or total disability.
With Portland workers' comp benefits, you can't sue your employer for your injuries, even if the employer was to blame. It's part of the workers' comp system—you may not get as much of a payout through workers' comp as you could with a lawsuit, but you will get your money quickly once your claim is approved. And you don't have to go through an uncertain, time-consuming lawsuit.
And you still may be able to sue a third party for your injury. For example, if your injury was caused by a defective piece of equipment, you may be able to sue the equipment manufacturer.
The Portland Workers' Comp Process
After your injury, your first priority should be getting medical attention. Be sure to tell your doctor you were injured on the job. Then, you need to tell your employer. Once you and your employer fill out the necessary forms, the company that provides your Portland workers' comp insurance will decide whether to accept your claim.
Now, if you haven't already done so, you should think about meeting with a Portland workers' comp lawyer. If your insurer denies your claim or doesn't agree to give you the benefits you are entitled to, you can appeal the decision. But there are strict time limits involved with appeals.
By contacting an attorney as soon as possible, you can be sure the attorney is up to speed and can start to work immediately on your appeal, if that's necessary. Your attorney can also advise you about the Portland workers' comp process to be sure you receive all the benefits you deserve.
Also, your attorney can make sure you are working with the right agency. Most Portland workers' comp issues are regulated by the Workers' Compensation Division of the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. However, some employees are covered by different agencies. For example, employees of the U.S. Department of Energy are covered by the Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation.
Don't worry about whether you can afford an attorney at this point. Many Portland work compensation lawyers will work on a contingency fee basis. They won't take money until you receive a payout.
Finding Lawyers for Your Workers' Comp Claim
If you have never hired a Portland workers' comp attorney before, you can ask coworkers, family and friends for recommendations. At Attorneys.com, we can connect you to lawyers who handle Oregon workers' comp claims, too. Fill out the form on this page, or call us at 1-877-913-7222. Once you provide a few simple pieces of information, we can give you the name of an attorney, whether you live in Beaverton, Rock Creek, Multnomah Village or elsewhere in the Portland area.
The lawyer will reach out to you within two business days, or you can contact the lawyer immediately.
Meeting with Portland Workers' Comp Lawyers
Once you have the name or names of attorneys, you can start meeting with them to decide which one you want to hire. During the initial consultation, ask a lot of questions about the attorney's experience, how the Portland workers' comp process works and what types of fees the attorney charges. This is your chance to decide whether you are comfortable with the attorney, trust his advice and want to hire him.
If you still aren't sure, talk to the attorney's references to see what they liked about the attorney and whether they would hire him again. Then, you should be ready to decide which attorney you want to hire.
By moving quickly to hire a lawyer for your Portland workers' comp claim, you can focus on healing from your injuries while your lawyer works on your behalf.