If hurt while on the job, you deserve to get compensation. You just want to know that you’ll be able to get the medical care that you need. You also want to make sure you get compensation for the time that you miss from work. It sounds simple enough. If hurt while doing your job, your job should take care of you, right? Ask any Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer and they’ll tell you this is not the case.
Often times, people who get injuries at work run into issues with their workers compensation claim. Your claim may be denied all together. Or, that you don’t have entitlement to the medical care that you need. Workers compensation is handled by your employer’s workers compensation insurance company.
When injured at work, you need to report your injury to Human Resources. Your human resources manager is required to communicate your injuries to the company’s workers comp insurance company. The insurance company should provide for you to get medical attention for your injuries. They should also make sure you receive your wages during the time you are out of work.
Things don’t always work out they would they should. Many times, an insurance company may deny your claim. Or, your paperwork is incomplete or improperly filed and your claim is delayed. To the insurance company, you are just another employee. To your family, however, you are the bread winner. In this economy, people can’t afford to go without a paycheck. So, when you’re told that you won’t be receiving your workers comp benefits, it can be scary. This is when you need to contact a Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer.
A Smyrna Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Will Go Up Against the Insurance Company
You may think your human resources manager will work with the insurance company to get your claim approval. However, your HR manager is busy and is dealing with a lot of other tasks. Your workers comp claim is probably not a top priority for her. This may not be fair, but it is reality. Workers comp lawyers in Smyrna deal with this every day.
If workers comp attorneys in Smyrna had a dime for every time a client is told that their benefits are pending, they’d be rich. It’s not uncommon for employees to wait weeks or months to start receiving their workers comp benefits. Sometimes, an employee is told that they denied their claim and there is nothing more than can be done. When this happens, you need to reach out to one of the workers comp attorneys in Smyrna.
If your workers comp claim is denied, you need to call a Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer. There are certain procedures that need to be followed for a Georgia workers compensation claim. Workers comp attorneys in Smyrna know the laws in Georgia. They will negotiate with the workers comp insurance company to try to get your claim paid. If they are unsuccessful, they will have to file a workers’ comp lawsuit to get you paid. Workers comp attorneys in Smyrna have handled these types of cases for decades.
A Smyrna Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Understands Georgia Workers’ Comp Law
A lot of people think that all employees in Georgia are entitled to workers compensation benefits. This is not the case. Not all employees can file a workers’ comp claim. Certain types of employees don’t qualify for workers comp. Even a skilled workers compensation attorney in Smyrna can’t do anything about this. Other employees don’t meet the requirements for workers compensation benefits. You want to have an experienced workers comp lawyer in Smyrna by your side to navigate the workers comp system in Georgia.
Some groups of people are not entitled to workers compensation in Georgia including:
- People who work for an employer who has three or less employees
A lot of people aren’t aware that small companies don’t have to provide workers comp insurance. If you work for an employer who has less than three employees, you aren’t entitled to workers comp. You will have to rely on an experienced workers comp lawyer in Smyrna to help you get compensation for your work-related injuries. You may need to file legal action against the employer. Or, you can try to qualify for short-term or long-term disability.
Most states exclude farm workers from workers comp benefits. Georgia is one of these states. There is nothing a workers’ compensation attorney in Smyrna can do to help farm workers.
Private employers are not required to provide workers compensation insurance. If you are a domestic servant, you will not qualify for workers comp benefits.
Because many railroad employees are exempt from certain state taxes, they are not covered under workers comp. You have to contribute to your workers comp insurance if you expect to receive workers comp benefits. Workers comp attorneys in Smyrna cannot demand that the state pay railroad employees workers comp benefits.
- Federal government employees
Since these employees are paid by the government and not by the state, they aren’t covered under the state’s workers compensation insurance program. Certain workers compensation attorneys in Smyrna specialize in these types of cases.
Technically, independent contractors are not employees. They file their own taxes and are not treated like full-time employees. Most independent contractors understand when they take their position that they will not be entitled to workers comp. There is nothing a workers’ comp attorney in Smyrna can do to turn an independent contractor into an employee.
If you don’t havc entitlement to workers comp benefits and you get an injury at work, contact a workers’ compensation lawyer in Smyrna. You will have to look at a different way of being compensated for your injuries.
What Types of Injuries Can My Smyrna Worker’s Compensation Lawyer Get You?
Most work-related injuries have coverage by workers compensation insurance. If the injury is very minor, it may not qualify you for workers comp. If you only miss a week of work, you are not going to receive workers comp. You have to miss at least a week to qualify for workers comp. You have to use all available vacation time and sick time before you can expect your benefits to kick in.
Your Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer will fight to get you benefits for the following types of injuries:
- Injuries sustained from falls or workplace accidents
- Illnesses caused by your employment
- Gradual injuries that build up over time at the same job
- Catastrophic injuries
This latest category of injury, catastrophic injuries, is a relatively new concept in Georgia.
Catastrophic injuries include:
- Spinal cord injury with severe paralysis
- Severe brain injury
- Second or third-degree burns
- Any other injury that will prevent the employee from doing most jobs.
Your workers comp lawyer in Smyrna will present evidence to prove that you have been injured. You will have to prove your injuries in order to qualify for workers comp benefits in Georgia.
Are There Situations Where a Workers Compensation Lawyer in Smyrna Can’t Get You Benefits?
There are situations where even an experienced workers comp lawyer in Smyrna can’t get you benefits. Georgia law excludes certain types of incidents from workers compensation benefits. Most of these involve employee behavior that is outside the scope of his work duties.
Some of the circumstances that would disqualify you from workers comp benefits include:
- Willful misconduct
- Self-inflicted injuries
- Use of illegal drugs
- Refusal to use personal protective equipment or safety devices
- Failure to give employer notice of the injury
- Refusal to take alcohol or drug screening following the accident
- Refusal or failure to complete medical treatment
If you’re hurt at work but fall into one of these categories, you are not going to receive workers compensation benefits. There is a little a workers’ comp attorney in Smyrna can do to help you in these situations.
If hurt at work and denied benefits for reasons other these those outlined above, you need to appeal your claim. You will want to rely on a workers’ compensation attorney in Smyrna to do this for you.
A Smyrna Workers Compensation Lawyer Can Help File Your Appeal
If you’re denied your workers comp benefits, you need to contact a workers’ compensation attorney in Smyrna, Georgia. There are certain rules to need to follow when appealing a workers’ comp claim. If you don’t follow the procedures correctly, your claim could be denied. You may even lose the right to appeal your claim all together.
The first thing your workers comp lawyer in Smyrna is going to do is file an appeal form. This is a “Notice of Claim” form and is titled WC-14. You must file your form within one (1) year from the date of your injury. You must complete the form and mail directly to the address at the bottom of the form.
Once they receive your approval, your claim will go to an administrative law judge who specializes in workers compensation. At this point, we strongly recommend you retain the services of a workers’ compensation attorney in Smyrna. You will not want to go up against the insurance company in court by yourself.
Your case will be schedule for a mediation before the court. This is an opportunity for your workers comp lawyer in Smyrna to meet with the insurance company to try to settle your claim. Most cases settle during mediation. The court does not appreciate it when parties refuse to negotiate a settlement. Workers compensation trials clog up the court system. It is better for all parties to work hard to settle the claim.
If workers compensation attorneys in Smyrna is unable to settle your claim, your case will be scheduled for trial. That is where your Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer will have to present evidence to prove your claim for benefits is warranted.
If I Have Approval What Workers Comp Benefits Do I Have Entitlement To?
If the Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer is successful, what happens next? Many people have no idea what benefits they have entitlement to under workers compensation.
Basically, in Georgia, you have entitlement to the following types of benefits under workers comp:
- Medical benefits – You have entitlement to have your medical care covered under workers comp in Georgia. You don’t have to pay co-pays or fees. Your prescriptions must have coverage under these benefits. You should not have to put out any money for your medical care. If this is not the case, contact your workers comp lawyer in Smyrna immediately.
- Wage Loss Benefits – this is the money you will receive to replace your ordinary wages. There are two types of wage loss benefits: temporary total disability benefits (TTD) and temporary partial disability benefits (TPD)
- Permanent Partial Disability Benefits – This money you will receive long-term to compensate you for whatever permanent disability the work-related accident caused.
Your Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer will work with your doctors to determine what type of benefits you have entitlement to. In almost every case, the insurance company wants to pay a low percentage. They will argue that your injuries are minor and that they are short-term. Your workers comp attorney in Smyrna is going to argue the opposite. He will try to get you as much compensation as possible.
A Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer will also make sure that you aren’t forced to return to work sooner than you are ready. Many employers and insurance companies try to get you back to work as soon as possible. The problem is that if you go back too early, you could suffer further injury.
Contact a Smyrna Workers’ Compensation Lawyer, Georgia Today
If hurt at work, you may have entitlement to workers comp benefits. If your claim is denied, you are going to need a workers’ comp attorney in Smyrna. You don’t want to wait too long to retain a Smyrna workers’ compensation lawyer. There are certain deadlines you need to meet and rules you have to follow.
If you don’t follow the procedures for workers comp in Georgia, your claim could be denied. You don’t want to miss any appointments. You want to stay in constant communication with your Smyrna workers compensation lawyer.
Contact one of our injury lawyers in Smyrna GA today to schedule your free initial consultation. Your attorney can answer any questions you may have. He can also give you an idea of how to proceed with your case. The consultation is free and you pay nothing until you settle your claim.