Can You Get Workers’ Comp Benefits for CTD?June 10, 2021
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Worker’s compensation is a type of business insurance.
It provides benefits if you’re hurt at work or you get certain illnesses as part of your job. The goal of worker’s compensation is to cover lost wages if you have to take time off work, as well as any medical care you might need.
The specifics of worker’s compensation benefits and how the process works depend on the state where you live.
Worker’s compensation is state-mandated everywhere except Texas. You have certain rights, including the ability to file a worker’s compensation claim without the fear of retaliation, which can include being fired. You can appeal if your claim is denied, and you have the right to receive medical treatment and the benefits that you qualify for.
You also have the right to get assistance from a worker’s compensation attorney, who can help you understand what can end up being a complex process and also serve as your advocate.
With that in mind, the following are things to know about worker’s compensation and also the role a lawyer might play in your case.
What’s Covered by Worker’s Compensation?
You don’t necessarily have to be injured at work for coverage to apply to you. If your injury happened while you were working and due to your work, even if you weren’t at your physical workplace, it may be covered.
Worker’s compensation covers the majority of injuries related to work, but not all of them.
For example, if you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, worker’s compensation wouldn’t cover your injuries. It also wouldn’t provide coverage if your injuries were self-inflicted, or they occurred while you were doing something illegal or that was against your employer’s policies.
Depending on your line of work and where you live, you might be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits if you get Covid-19, but that’s difficult to prove. It’s tough to show that you contracted the disease at work.
If your employer’s insurance company rejects your claim, then you should get a letter that will outline why they denied it. They will also tell you the process to begin appealing it, and that may be where an attorney becomes part of the situation.
Why Would You Hire an Attorney?
If your claim is denied, you can hire an attorney who specializes in worker’s compensation claims. They will give you a greater chance of getting benefits.
Attorneys will communicate, on your behalf, with the worker’s compensation insurance company. They can also help in gathering medical evidence that will support your claim.
You do have to realize that the representatives of your employer’s insurance company don’t want what’s best for you. They want essentially the exact opposite, and that’s the nature of their job.
An attorney can also negotiate a settlement with the insurance company on your behalf.
Gathering and Developing Evidence
Probably the biggest role an attorney will play in your worker’s compensation case is that they will help you gather evidence, and that’s what’s going to support your case.
This might mean obtaining your medical records, arranging treatment with particular doctors, getting medical opinions via independent medical exams, and doing depositions of medical experts.
Other types of evidence might include getting testimony from a vocational expert to highlight the physical demands of your job, gathering statements from people who know you about your activities in daily life, and evidence that shows your employer’s lack of safety or training.
Negotiating a Settlement
Aide from gathering evidence, the next most important thing an attorney will help you do is negotiating with your employer’s insurance company. This can mean estimating the worth of your case based on specific factors like the extent of your injuries and your medical expenses.
Your lawyer will also make sure a settlement is written in the right way so that you don’t face consequences in the future. For example, if your settlement isn’t written correctly and you apply for Social Security disability benefits, you could lose hundreds of dollars a month.
Finally, if you have a hearing or trial, an attorney will represent you there.
This happens when you can’t reach a settlement with the insurance company. Your attorney will ensure everything is submitted correctly and on time, and they will then go to the hearing or trial and outline why you should get benefits.
An attorney can play an important role if your worker’s compensation claim is initially denied. Most worker’s compensation attorneys work for a contingency fee as well, meaning they only get paid if you win your case.