Workers’ compensation policies are part of broader employment legislation that the U.S. federal government and individual states have enacted to protect American workers. When an employee is injured at their workplace or while performing a work-related task, they may be eligible to collect financial assistance through a workers’ compensation program.
If you’ve been injured on the job, you may be wondering if your injury could qualify for a workers’ compensation claim. As beneficial as these policies are, they can also be incredibly confusing and complicated. For a worker who is injured and is trying to recover, the entire claims process might seem too complex to deal with.
Luckily, an experienced Palm Beach County workers’ compensation lawyer may help you understand the unique factors at play in your case and help you determine if filing for workers’ compensation is in your best interest.
Here’s just a quick look at some of the more common questions that injured employees may have about a workers’ comp claim:
1. What types of medical conditions are covered under workers’ compensation?
Many different conditions could be covered by workers’ compensation. Injuries directly related to accidents can be covered, as well as injuries that develop over a long period of time as a result of work-related activities. Certain professions, such as mining or construction work, may also present risks for the development of serious illnesses as a result of work-related duties.
2. Can my employer fire me or penalize me for filing a workers’ comp claim?
Employers are not legally allowed to retaliate against injured employees who file for workers’ compensation. Acts of retaliation might include wrongful termination, cutting work hours without reason, or a demotion without reason. If you believe that your employer is retaliating against you — or is trying to prevent you from filing a claim entirely — don’t hesitate to contact a workers’ comp lawyer to investigate the details.
3. What if I’m technically responsible for my own injury at work?
One of the biggest benefits of workers’ compensation is that liability isn’t as much of an issue as it would be in a personal injury case. Regardless of who was responsible for the injury, an employee who sustains a legitimate injury at work could be able to collect workers’ comp payments.
4. What happens if my injury gets worse after I’ve settled my case?
Unfortunately, you cannot request more money after a claim has already been settled. This is why it may be very beneficial to hire a lawyer who may determine if your initial settlement offer is fair. If the offer is lower than what you deserve, your lawyer may negotiate with the insurance company for a fairer settlement.
5. What can I do if my claim has been denied?
Workers’ comp claims, in many cases, can be appealed. Sometimes a claim is denied for a clerical error or for failing to provide enough evidence. An appealed claim may address these issues.
If you need help with your own workers’ comp claim, don’t hesitate to reach out to a workers’ compensation attorney for additional legal counsel.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from the Law Office of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt for their insight into workers compensation practice.