Hiring a Work Injury Lawyer
It is every employer’s duty to provide a safe working environment to his workers. However, there are some employers who fail to keep the regulations in mind and this results in work injuries to their workers. In other cases, accidents happen despite all efforts being made to make the work environment safe. So if you are a worker and have sustained a work injury, here are all the facts that you should know regarding the legal aspect of your work injury and hiring a work injury lawyer
What Are My Rights in Case of an Injury?
As a worker who has sustained injury at the workplace due to your employer or your own or a third party’s negligence, you have certain rights.
- You can claim for temporary or permanent disability compensation depending on the nature of your injury from your employer
- You can get medical help for which you can claim reimbursement from your employer
- You can contest any decision made by your employer, their insurance company or the workers’ compensation court and appeal to a higher authority if you do not agree with the former’s decision
- You can return to your job if and when your physician deems it appropriate
- You can hire a work injury lawyer to represent you in the proceedings
- You can refuse to use your personal health insurance for treatment
Knowing your rights in such a case is extremely important. You can consult a work injury lawyer to know more about your rights and the steps to be taken in case of an injury at your workplace.
Another important point to understand is that if you have suffered injury at the hands of a third party, you will have to file a civil lawsuit instead of approaching a workers’ compensation court. This is because a workers’ compensation is intended to reimburse you for lost wages and medical bills. In case of an injury by a third party, a civil lawsuit will help you get compensated for the pain and suffering you have gone through.
What Should I Do to Protect My Rights in Case of an Injury?
The first thing you need to do on sustaining an injury is to inform your employer. If the injury is severe, focus on getting medical help first and then inform your employer. There is a specified time period for reporting the accident to your employer. So keep that in mind.
Second, file a worker’s compensation. You will need to understand your rights and your eligibility for a claim. For this, you will have to find a work injury lawyer.
Do I Need a Work Injury Lawyer?
Not every work injury case needs an attorney. For instance, if your injury is minor and you can return to work after a few days of rest, which is being provided by your employer – you do not need legal intervention. However, if the injury is far more severe than a broken arm, you should reach out to a work injury lawyer. If any of the following apply to you, look for a work injury lawyer at the earliest.
- If your injury requires you to get a surgery done
- If your health condition is altered permanently because of the damage
- If your ability to work on any job on a regular basis is compromised permanently
- If you want to continue working at the same place but in a different capacity
- If you want to contest any decision made by your employer or other authorities
- If you have been denied your medical benefits
A work injury lawyer can help you with any of these situations. In addition, if you require retraining for an alternate job because of your injury, your lawyer can help you get the retraining fee from your employer as a part of your compensation.
The crux of the matter is that such laws are complicated and need an expert’s intervention. If your situation requires legal advice, reach out to work injury lawyers in your area and meet them up for a free consultation.
Most work injury lawyers offer a free consultation session that lasts for about half an hour. A personal interview can give you much more clarity about the need for legal representation in your case. Understand clearly if the lawyer is giving you a realistic picture of your case. To do this, meet with a couple of other lawyers in your area and then take a judgement on who to work with.
How Can a Work Injury Lawyer Help Me?
A work injury lawyer can help you navigate through the legal hassles in case of a workplace injury and help you recover your compensation and punitive damages. A few days or months off work can result considerable financial losses.
A work injury lawyer can also help you understand the circumstances under which you can claim a compensation or file a lawsuit against your employer. Your employer is responsible for providing you a safe environment and safe equipment for work. If this is breached, you can seek the help of a work injury lawyer to file for workers compensation or lawsuit.
Your lawyer can help you prove negligence by your employer in case you have sustained injuries.
It is also your employer’s responsibility to provide you personal protection equipment. Some of these equipments should not be reused. If you have been injured due to the reuse of such equipment, your lawyer can help you claim for your losses.
How to Hire a Work Injury Lawyer?
Now that you have understood the basics regarding your work injury, it’s time for you to find a work injury lawyer. You can look up online for references or try and source the contacts of lawyers near your from your friends and family. In either case, make sure you do a background check and meet the lawyer in person, if possible. This is to ensure that you have hired the right lawyer to represent you. While looking for lawyers, make sure you have considered the following factors:
Experienced lawyers can help you get your documents in place, file a lawsuit and give you the right direction. A lawyer who has handled such cases before can help you prepare for the outcomes. He will also realistically set your expectations. If the lawyer has handled such cases successfully in the past, you can have faith that he will try his best to successfully close your case too.
Look for a lawyer who practices in the neighbourhood. If you have sustained an injury and have to meet your lawyer more often, it will be easier for him to come over. Look up for lawyers near you online. It is the easiest way to look for contacts by setting geographical boundaries.
One of the most important factors that you need to consider is the monetary compensation that you need to give the lawyer. Most work injury lawyers will take a percentage from your compensation amount on successful settlement. However, if the lawyer does not settle your case – you do not owe him anything. You would want to discuss the financials with your prospective lawyers in detail before handing over the case to anyone.
During your personal interview with the lawyer, make sure you ask all the right questions. You need to have absolute clarity about the lawyer’s credentials before you entrust your case to him. Here are a few questions that you might want to ask your work injury lawyer:
Will you be working on my case?
In most cases, the lawyer you meet would be the one handling your case. However, sometimes senior lawyers hand over their cases to their associates. It helps to know who is working on your case. Meet the person and understand his approach. If you have issues with the person, reach out to the lawyer you met first and discuss.
How will you update me on the developments?
Your lawyer should meet you at regular intervals to update you on the status of your case. If a personal meeting isn’t possible, he should email you or have a phone conversation with you regarding your case. Understand this clearly during your conversation with the lawyer.
What do think of my case?
This is an extremely important question. A good lawyer will set realistic expectations on the outcome of the case. Understand if the lawyer is giving you the right picture. Do not fall for someone who promises big results to you.
What will be your fees? How will you handle additional costs?
Understand the fee structure of your lawyer. Most lawyers will charge you a percentage. Take the breakdown of the fees for your understanding. Besides the lawyer’s fees, there are additional costs towards documentation and witness preparation involved. Speak to your lawyer clearly to understand how he intends to bill it to you.
So go ahead and reach out to a work injury lawyer today!