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What to Expect in Workers Compensation Litigation

If you are an employee injured on the job, workers compensation insurance can help you weather this difficult experience. What is workers' compensation insurance? Essentially, it covers your lost wages, disability, and medical payments when you are injured on the job.

The Injury

Each year there are millions of work-related injuries, some even fatal. Some of the most common injuries include sprains, tears, falls, and back injuries.  If injured, follow these steps:

  • First, get the medical care you need in response to the injury.
  • Report the incident and injury to your employer as soon as you can.
  • In the workplace, your top priority should be to seek necessary medical attention. There are statutes of limitation that vary by state, so you will want to report the incident sooner rather than later.
  • Next, your employer will report the incident to the company's workers compensation carrier.
  • Typically your next step is a medical exam requested by the workers comp insurer. Whether you can select which doctor you see depends on the laws of your state. Some states stipulate that the employer select the doctor, while other states vary on that requirement.

Protect Yourself

The medical examiner will ask you all about the injury, how it happened, what you were doing at the time, etc. Keep in mind that your company's insurance provider may be looking for a silver bullet that will help your employer deny your claim. You will want to answer the questions accurately, but do not provide additional information. Take mental notes of questions you are asked.

Hire an Attorney

You might want to consider hiring a workers compensation attorney. Hiring an attorney who specializes in workers compensation issues can help ensure you get all the benefits you are supposed to receive. The attorney will check your employer's records to look for any history of unsafe working conditions and past injuries. Your attorney also can assess your claim to help determine the amount of your benefits. Finally, if your employer's workers comp insurer denies your claim, your attorney can represent you in an appeal before your state workers compensation board.