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Fully Understanding Workers Compensation (Workers’ Comp)
The workers’ comp program is mandated by the government. Most all employers must provide this insurance to their employees in the event the employee is injured or killed on the job.
Federal Government Workers Compensation
If the federal government is your employer, you have a specific workers’ compensation program covering energy employees, longshore workers, federal employees, and harbor workers. The federal government workers’ compensation program may differ somewhat from what the states offer employees in many industries.
Workers’ Compensation for Black Lung Disease
Special workers’ compensation programs covering specific health conditions such as Black Lung Disease are compensated for through the Black Lung Program. This program is responsible for handling death and disability cases involving coal miners and their families.
Even though this insurance is mandated by the United States Government, it is handled by the state. Because each state handles all workers’ comp claims, the benefits vary depending on the state the claim is filed.
Workers’ Compensation Vary from State to State
Filing workers’ compensation claims or lawsuits against employers has become technical, complicated, and complex. If you are hurt on the job, is it wise to hire an attorney with expertise in workers comp or negligent lawsuit cases?
Texas and Workers’ Compensation
Out of all the states in the Americas, Texas is the only state that does not mandate employers to maintain workers’ compensation insurance.
Summary of Workers Compensation
- All employers in every state except Texas must provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. Each state appoints a specific board to handle workers’ compensation and disputes. Each state writes its own workers’ compensation rules.
- Employers pay the premiums to third-party insurers.
- This insurance pays employees for an extensive list of costs due to an accident/injury occurring on the job.
- If you file workers’ comp, you cannot sue your employer for costs associated with the injury or death on the job.
- Even though worker’s comp can be considered disability insurance, workers’ compensation is not disability insurance.
- Workers compensation may pay the employee for a partial salary loss and medical bills due to injuries received on the job. Salary recovery is not the total salary of the injured employee but only a partial part of gross wages.
- Some programs pay two-thirds of the employee’s gross pay.
- Your workers’ compensation may pay for therapy visits.
- Some states exclude small businesses.
- Some states’ comps vary depending on the industry.
- Workers’ compensation is non-taxable for state and federal taxes.
- Those who file a workers’ compensation claim may be covered for medical expenses only, in addition to other possible expenses.
- If the injured victim dies, their workers comp pays the dependents of the deceased.
- Employers can dispute the workers’ compensation claim. In these cases, your attorney and the Workers’ Compensation Board resolve the issues. (You sorely need a seasoned attorney by your side)
- Insurance fraud is monitored to ensure the employee did not file a false claim by claiming the injury happened on the job when it did not. Some employees exaggerate an injury or may invent an injury.
- There is a circle of organized criminal conspiracies by some attorneys, crooked doctors, and patients submitting false claims.
- States set insurance premium amounts.
- Workers’ compensation benefits cover salaried employees.
- Some states exempt freelancers, contractors, real estate agents, laborers, domestic workers, musicians, and crop-dusting airplane crews who cannot file workers’ compensation.
- Workers’ compensation includes two types of coverage, A and B.
This coverage pays for salary replacement, medical care, rehabilitation, and death benefits.
This coverage pays for exceeding minimums through coverage A. They are paid by winning a lawsuit against the employer for negligent actions that caused the employee’s injuries or death.
Negligent Actions Cause Negligent Accidents, Injury, Death
Rarely can an accident happen if there is no negligent action by a person, persons, or a company?
If you are a resident of the state of North Carolina and you are injured or die on the job due to someone’s negligence, there are definitive steps you must take when filing a compensation claim.
You have the right to file for workers’ compensation if you are hurt on the job due to any person or company’s negligence.
If you die on the job due to any person or company’s negligence, your advocate has the right to file for workers’ compensation to help pay for the mounting and unexpected costs associated with your injuries.
If you, the employee, die, we represent your family in seeking fair compensation to pay for all the expenses and end-of-life costs related to your accident.
Negligent Accident Cases Carry a High Cost
- Too many negligent accidents causing severe injuries or death happen every day.
- The top cause of negligent accidents, injury, or death, has always been due to some other person’s negligence.
- Sometimes this negligence involves more than one person or a company.
There would be no accidents if every person took the time to pay attention to their actions. Negligent accidents cause a chain reaction of mounting debt and unexpected costs for the victim. Some examples of these costs are listed below.
- Mounting medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of personal property
- Loss of quality of life
- Months to years of rehabilitation
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of companionship
- Travel expenses, the list is endless
You may return to work after you heal or lose your ability to continue employment due to permanent disability.
Your workers’ compensation claim depends on the facts of your case, the depth of your injuries, your diagnosis, and your necessary treatment.
Filing Workers’ Compensation Claims in North Carolina
- Always seek medical attention after a job-related injury.
- You cannot work due to your injuries.
- You have mounting medical bills that you cannot pay.
You need to have financial support to help recoup your losses. The very first thing you do is to seek medical assistance. You never refuse to be examined by a doctor when hurt on the job. Refusing medical treatment or a medical exam after you sustain possible injuries while on the job can significantly and negatively impact your workers’ compensation claim.
It does not matter if you believe an accident you sustained at work caused no ill effects. Perhaps you have no signs or symptoms of injuries at the time of your incident.
Some victims find that in a few weeks or months, symptoms arise stemming from their on-the-job accident.
North Carolina law says you have only 30 days to,
- Submit an incident report to your employer
- Get checked out by a medical doctor.
- All work-related incidents in North Carolina require immediate reporting to your employer or supervisor.
Q. Do you need medical help? Even if you believe you are OK, please allow a medical doctor to check you for possible injuries.
Q. Can someone drive you to the hospital emergency room?
Q. Are you able to drive yourself to the emergency room?
While injuries may not be present at the time, injuries can develop a few days, weeks, or months after your accident. You must be seen by the ER doctor. Your company may have a designated physician, medical facility, or medical clinic dealing with workers’ compensation.
Notify your employer, supervisor, team leader, and insurance carriers as soon as possible that you were hurt on the job. This starts your claim process.
You must make your employer understand what happened and how you became injured. We cannot stress that it is crucial to write down the facts of your accident story as soon as possible.
Depending on your injuries, perhaps you can assign a trusted family member or friend to take pictures and document the facts of your accident.
Give us a call and explain your situation. This first call is a free, no-obligation call for legal assistance. It makes no difference if you file a claim for workers’ compensation or file a lawsuit against the negligent person.
Either of these situations requires the services and expertise of a negligent, seasoned attorney to guide and direct your path. If you do not win your compensation case, we do not get paid. However, we have an impressive winning track record.
You must inform the doctor, nursing staff, and facility that your case is a workers’ compensation injury and is work-related. The medical facility needs specific information such as,
- The name of your company
- The name of your employer
You must keep your employer up to date on your condition. You need to give your employer your diagnosis and your doctor’s recommendations for treatment and prognosis of recovery. We can assist you in this communication, depending on your condition.
Remember, you have 30 days to submit a written statement to your employee. You must make a hard copy of this official report. This statement is sent hand-delivered or by certified mail.
- You need your attorney’s expertise to help you draft your incident statement.
- Outline the details of your incident.
- What was the date and time of the incident?
- What was the nature of the injury?
- How many days do you anticipate missing work? Your doctor has a say about how long you will be off work.
- Your attorney will help you include all necessary legal elements in your statement.
The Expertise of Your Negligent Attorney
Without the help of a seasoned, negligent attorney, you risk not getting fair compensation promptly. While you are in the hospital, in rehabilitation, or at home, we work hard on your behalf.
We communicate with your employer, their attorneys, and all insurance companies. We calculate all of your losses and ensure that you receive all the benefits of workers’ compensation you are entitled to receive.
Most victims are unaware of the type of workers’ comp claims available in North Carolina.
Temporary Disability Benefits
When you apply for temporary disability benefits, you cannot work while you recover from your injuries. Thus, your benefits are temporary. Generally, workers’ compensation benefits do not begin until the first seven days have passed.
During these first seven days, you could request any personal or vacation time you have earned be paid.
These benefit checks usually calculate two-thirds of your gross wages. Your attorney knows the minimum and maximum payments in North Carolina and for what period.
Permanent Disability Benefits
Your doctor must determine when you have reached your highest quality of living. It takes your doctor’s expertise to state whether you can continue to improve your condition or if you are at your highest expected level of recovery.
In these instances, you undoubtedly will be unable to return to your job as you once knew it. Permanent disability depends wholly on your injuries’ nature and impairment rating.
Your seasoned negligent attorney can calculate the amount of money you need to continue paying incoming medical bills and living expenses for the rest of your life if you are deemed permanently disabled.
Another reason you need a seasoned negligent attorney working for you is that your attorney knows all of the tricks that insurance companies attempt to use to make you sound like the guilty party versus the victim in this accident.
This tactic is not unusual for insurance companies to use on victims. This is upsetting for a person who is dealing with catastrophic injuries. However, with us at your side, we can cushion any blows these insurance companies may attempt to use.
Insurance companies never want to pay money to victims; in most instances, these insurance companies pay as little as possible to negligent accident victims.
These settlements offered by insurance companies for an out-of-court settlement always sound wonderful because you are becoming overwhelmed with mounting medical bills. These amounts are never enough to pay all your expenses for the present and future.
We caution you not to accept any amounts that an insurance company offers you. These amounts are never enough, and once you accept a settlement offer by an insurance company, your case is closed. You realize you do not have enough money from this settlement to carry you into the future.
Our attorneys have a specific way to calculate your expenses. If an insurance company calls you and offers you an attractive settlement, do not accept the settlement and refer the caller to your attorney to review the settlement offer. We will let you know if it is a fair settlement.
North Carolina compensation awards are based on two-thirds of your average weekly wages. The state never considers the higher weeks of earnings. Weeks are calculated and averaged to determine your benefit. Benefits also depend on the extent of your injuries.
For example, the loss of an arm or leg could mean several months of disability payments, and the compensation could mean a significant amount of money. As your attorneys, we will calculate a fair and just settlement that carries you well into the future.
Employers do not relish paying workers’ compensation any more than an insurance company relishes paying out sizeable settlements. While insurance companies use various tricks to cut your settlement amount by not paying you anything, our attorneys have their own tricks to help increase your chances of getting a fair workers’ benefits settlement.
Our skilled and seasoned negligent accident attorneys know that your doctor is the foundation of your workers’ compensation case. We,
- Assure that your employer is notified about your medical condition, diagnosis, and prognosis. We keep your employer updated on your progress and quality of life.
- We ensure that you and your employer comply with your doctor’s medical advice and recommendations to ensure you reach your highest quality of life.
- We do not always trust a company doctor. While a company doctor should be impartial in your diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis, their primary goal may not be you but the company you are claiming compensation for. You may not feel comfortable dealing with the company doctor.
It is your right to seek medical care from an alternate doctor
Not all doctors working for specific companies engage in questionable practices. However, some doctors are hired to help companies with workers’ compensation claims by denying expensive tests.
Some insurance companies do not like to pay more than they must. Thus, when the doctor denies you tests that benefit you, the insurance company holds these doctors in higher esteem. We stress to negligent accident victims if they perceive an uncomfortable feeling or conflict of interest between them and their company doctor, they must let us know. Victims do not feel like these doctors have their best interests and are only trying to remain in the good graces of employers and insurance companies.
You may not feel comfortable with the comments by the doctor to you, treatment recommendations, or the longevity of your disability. We urge our clients to talk with us whenever they feel uncomfortable with the company doctor.
- Another trick that insurance companies use to keep from paying fair compensation is by placing your injury story into question.
These agents and their attorneys make you sound like the guilty party and the negligent person or company the victim. These professionals are clever and shrewd at twisting your injury story’s truth and facts.
- Employers, their attorneys, and insurance companies are skilled at confusing victims to the point of victims doubting their own stories.
They can make the victim sound like they are lying and not being truthful about what happened to them to cause their accident. You must stick to the facts of your accident story and remember what you said the first time.
Never lie about the facts because lies can catch up with you. When relating your story repeatedly, you cannot remember what you said the first time if you lie.
Tell your accident story once and stick to the facts so you can repeat the same story without any doubts about what happened to cause your injuries. It is wise to write down what happened. Outline, on paper, the facts about your accident so that you do not forget essential facts.
The bottom line is that your accident story must remain consistent, and if you are telling the truth, you have no problem relating your story repeatedly.
If your accident story changes every time you relate what happened, this is enough for your company to deny you benefits. Ensure your attorney gets a copy of your story with all the facts as they happened.
Read over and study the facts that you wrote down. Reading your story daily ingrains in your mind the facts as they happened. Reviewing the facts of your case ensures that you keep your facts straight no matter how many times you are asked to tell your story. Your facts will never waiver or change.
When your employer, their attorneys, and insurance companies ask you to detail what happened to you, you can stick to your facts without causing doubt in the minds of those who do not want to see you win your case.
- The only way to ensure you receive a fair and equitable benefit from workers’ compensation in North Carolina is to hire a seasoned, skilled, and licensed negligent accident attorney.
We work tirelessly to ensure you or your family receive fair workers’ compensation benefits.
The Critical Necessity of Hiring a Seasoned Negligent Accident Attorney to Fight for Your Victim’s Rights in North Carolina
If you do not hire a seasoned attorney with expertise in handling workers’ compensation cases, you risk losing your claim, or you will not receive the fair benefit compensation you are entitled to. Our attorneys are experts at helping our victims file workers’ comp claims on time.
Accidents that cause injury or death also cause mounting medical bills, loss of wages, and much more. Accidents rarely happen if it were not for an act of negligence on the part of the employee, another person, or a company.
When these accidents happen, the employee has a limited time to file a workers’ comp or a negligent accident claim to pay for all the losses they experience. An employee injured on the job has two choices. You can file a workers’ compensation claim, or you can file a lawsuit against your employer. You must decide which type of claim you need to file. Our attorneys can help you decide.
You and your seasoned attorney must decide which type of claim benefits you the most. If you are hurt or killed on the job, it is rare if you have enough money to cover the many costs.
Q. Is the employee wise to file a claim for workers’ compensation?
Q. Is it wise for the employee to forego workers’ compensation and file a lawsuit against the employer?
A. Only your seasoned negligent attorney can answer these questions. Your attorney guides and directs you towards making the right decision. Your attorney can calculate present and future expenses should you get injured or killed on the job.
You waive your right to file a lawsuit against your employer as soon as you file a workers’ compensation claim.