Filing Workers’ Comp Without A Lawyer Is Almost Always A Bad Idea
You were walking in the warehouse at work and slipped in grease spots. As a result, you sprained your ankle and back and can’t work for a month. Should you hire a workers’ compensation attorney to file a claim with your employer’s insurance company?
While there are some situations where an attorney may be unnecessary, there are risks involved when dealing with the insurance company on your own. First, learn in this article why it is often not recommended to file your workers’ compensation claims without a lawyer. Then, speak to Green Bay workers’ comp attorneys Gillick, Wicht, Gillick & Graf about filing for workers’ compensation benefits.
What Are The Most Common Workplace Injuries?
There are many injuries Green Bay residents have at work, depending on the type of job. Experienced and well-trained employees can usually avoid mishaps on the job, but accidents still happen. Some of the most common on-the-job accidents we see at Gillick, Wicht, Gillick & Graf are:
- Neck and back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken bones
- Hearing loss
Whatever the workplace injury, it is critical to seek immediate medical attention. Establishing a medical record of the workplace injury is essential to file a workers’ comp claim later. Also, you need to file the claim within two years under state law, but sooner.
Can You Handle A Workers’ Comp Claim Without An Attorney?
It is possible to handle the claim in minor accidents without a lawyer. If the following statements apply, a workers’ compensation attorney may not be needed:
- You had a minor injury that did not make you miss work
- Your company was understanding and helpful and said the injury was on the job, so they will ensure you get benefits.
- There is no preexisting condition in the injured body part
An attorney may not be needed if these statements apply. However, it is usually wise to have the case reviewed by a licensed Green Bay workers’ comp attorney. They will inform you if having an attorney would be beneficial. The attorney will not take a case that will not result in compensation for them.
When Is It A Bad Idea Not To Hire A Lawyer?
We want to live in a world where injured workers do not have difficulty getting benefits after work accidents. However, there are many situations in Wisconsin where employers and insurance companies wrongfully deny workers comp benefits. If any of the following describe your case, contact a workers’ comp attorney today;
The Company Denies The Claim
After your injury, notify the employer that you were injured at work. The company must contact their workers’ comp insurance provider and file the claim. If the employer does not follow up, it can be harder to receive benefits. An attorney can encourage the insurance company to get moving. If they fail, they can threaten a lawsuit.
The Insurance Settlement Does Not Cover Your Damages
After a severe workplace injury, you could be off work for months. Then, if you are unable to work and have only part of your salary covered, you may need more than the insurance settlement to provide for your needs.
A judge must approve every workers’ compensation settlement. But many judges will sign off unless it is highly unfair. As a result, many claims are settled and signed off on but still not enough to cover your damages and losses.
You Have A Permanent Disability
You can have either permanent partial or total disability. If you are partially disabled, you can still do work but not in the same way and amount as before. A total disability means you cannot ever work again. Long-term disabilities are costly, and your attorney is needed to ensure you have the funds to live without being able to work.
You Have A Pre-Existing Condition
An attorney is often needed if the injured party has a pre-existing condition affecting the injured body part. For example, if you slipped and hurt your back, the case is complicated if you had a slipped disc injury the year before. The insurance provider may argue that your injury is related to the preexisting condition, and they will deny coverage.
Fortunately, a lawyer can be a massive help in this circumstance. They may provide conclusive medical evidence that your disability was caused by a workplace injury, not a pre-existing condition.
The Employer Fires Or Discriminates Against You
It is against state and federal law for a company to fire or discriminate after you file for workers’ compensation. Common retaliation after filing a claim could be cutting your hours, putting you in a lesser position, harassing or even firing you.
By law, injured workers are allowed to get workers’ comp after a workplace injury. However, if the employer is retaliating against you, it is time to hire an attorney.
Workers’ compensation attorneys can review your case without cost to determine if legal action is warranted. If the attorney takes the case and obtains compensation for you, they are paid from the settlement. Most injured workers do not pay out of pocket for their lawyers, so there is nothing to lose and a lot to gain.
Contact Green Bay Workers’ Comp Attorneys Today
After a workplace accident, contacting the HR department and filing a workers’ compensation case on your own can be tempting. Many might assume their insurance company’s best interests will treat them fairly. This is an unwise assumption.
Workers’ comp insurance companies stay in business by paying less than possible in claims. Therefore, you will not get nearly as much money filing without a lawyer. With the help of Green Bay workers’ compensation lawyers, you can get more money for a longer time.
Our workers’ compensation lawyers in Green Bay also work with injured workers in the following communities: Milwaukee, Appleton, Brookfield, Fon du Lac, Kenosha, Madison, Manitowoc, Menomonee Falls, New Berlin, Oshkosh, and Wisconsin Rapids. Contact Gillick, Wicht, Gillick & Graf today to learn how our attorneys can help with your claim: (414) 257-2667.