If things go smoothly with your workers' compensation claim then you can expect to get paid some of your usual salary while you recuperate. Unfortunately, there are numerous opportunities for a claim to get held up or denied, leaving you with an injury and no way to be compensated for it. When you get that dreaded letter in the mail you may need to take some steps to right things and get your claim back on track. Read on to learn how to know when you need more help from a workers' compensation attorney.
1. You get a letter of denial and the reason involves more than a minor correction. Some claims get sent back for issues that only require you to make a phone or send in a corrected claim form. Some claims, however, are more difficult to straighten out. For example, the denial might state that your claim is being denied due to the fact that your injury was not work-related at all.
2. You reported your injury to your supervisor but they are refusing to file a claim. You may need to contact your state's workers' compensation board and file a complaint or see if you can file a claim on your own. If your employer is refusing to file on your behalf, is trying to fire you or has fired you or is contending that the injury never happened then you may need legal help.
3. Your injury is far from minor and your doctor is telling you that you may never fully recover from it. Permanent injuries require special handling and you should get some help. You might get offered a settlement and getting what you really deserve requires great forethought and consideration. You might never be able to work at any job ever again and the financial compensation should take that into consideration. The workers' comp carrier is not on your side and you will need your own advocate. There are several issues to consider, like:
- Lump sum payment or structured payments?
- Rehabilitation, job search services and a suitable job offer or 100% disability?
4. You are being asked to return to work after an independent medical exam. This exam seeks to determine your level of healing and you may be asked to return to work or lose your job. You have rights when it comes to appealing these rulings and you may need legal help to attain those rights.
If your claim has fallen completely off the tracks speak to a workers' comp attorney as soon as possible.