Injured at Work? We Can Help!
California Employers Are Required to Carry Workers’ Comp Insurance
Every occupation has some risk of injury, whether you are an administrative assistant, a construction worker, a professional athlete, or a first responder.
Your injury can arise from an accident on the job, which is called a specific injury. You can also become injured due to repetitive motions or activities associated with your job, exposure to chemicals and/or hazardous substances, and/or the stresses of your occupation. These injuries are called cumulative trauma injuries or wear-and-tear injuries.
Workers’ compensation insurance is one of two federally mandated insurances, and it provides a valuable safety net for individuals who suffer from workplace injuries or illnesses. At Leigh Law Firm, our San Diego work injury attorney fights to obtain the maximum workers’ compensation benefits for employees who have suffered injuries on the job.
If you or a loved one has been injured or has become ill from a work-related condition, contact Leigh Law Firm now. We can help you pursue the benefits you need to maintain financial stability as you recuperate from your injury.
Do I Need a Workers’ Compensation Attorney?
If you have an injury at work, you need a skilled and experienced attorney to represent your interests and ensure that you receive the maximum benefits to which you are entitled by law. Your employer and their insurance company will attempt to limit your recovery as much as possible. Obtaining the benefits to which you are entitled is never as simple as it should be, and you should not attempt to navigate the complex workers’ compensation system without an experienced attorney. Insurance companies are for-profit businesses, and they will do whatever they can to help their bottom line.
Above all, you need an aggressive attorney to fight for your interests and get you the compensation you deserve. When you hire Leigh Law Firm, we will assist you with every aspect of your claim. We will file all the necessary workers’ compensation documents with the court, respond to denials of medical treatment, ensure that you are evaluated by neutral doctors, and get you the treatment you deserve to get you back on your feet.
When you trust your case to our firm, we will get to know you and your situation and develop a strategy that is tailored to your specific circumstances. This client-centered approach is just one of the factors that has helped us obtain multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for our clients.
When Should You Hire a Workers' Comp Lawyer?
While the process of filing a workers' compensation claim can be straightforward, there are times when it may be beneficial to hire a workers' compensation lawyer:
- Your claim has been denied: If your claim for workers' compensation benefits has been denied, you may need to hire a lawyer to help you appeal the decision. They can help you gather additional evidence to support your claim and represent you at a hearing.
- Your employer is retaliating against you: If you feel your employer is treating you unfairly because you filed a workers' compensation claim, you should consider hiring an attorney. Retaliation can include demotions, salary reductions, or even termination.
- Your injury is severe or permanent: If your injury is severe or permanent, you may be entitled to additional benefits such as permanent disability. An attorney can help you navigate the complex process of obtaining these benefits.
- You're not receiving the benefits you're entitled to: If you're not receiving the benefits you're entitled to, you may need to hire an attorney to help you enforce your rights. A lawyer can help you through the appeals process or file a lawsuit if necessary.
Hiring a workers' compensation attorney can help ensure you receive the benefits you're entitled to under the law. If you're unsure whether you need an attorney, it's always a good idea to schedule a consultation to discuss your case.
What Is Considered a Workplace Injury?
Work injuries include specific traumatic events such as a slip and fall or a car accident that happen while you are on the clock. They also include injuries that occur over a period of time due to continuous or repetitive motions, such as leg or back injuries, “tennis elbow,” or carpal tunnel syndrome.
Illnesses and diseases caused by your work are also considered a workplace injury. These include:
- Certain cancers
- Heart disease
- Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS/RSD)
- Breathing problems
- Psychiatric injuries
- Exposure to toxic chemicals or fumes
You Are Protected When Filing for Workers’ Comp
Are you worried about losing your job if you report your injury to your employer? Are you worried about how your employer will be affected by reporting your injury? Don’t be!
A work-related injury is considered a disability. Therefore, your employer cannot discriminate or retaliate against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim. For example, if you are fired after reporting an injury, this could be considered discrimination.
Filing a workers’ compensation claim is not the same as suing your employer. Workers’ compensation is an insurance benefit that your employer pays for. If you file a successful workers’ compensation claim, the insurance company—not your employer—pays your benefits.
However, if your employer is impermissibly uninsured, then your employer may pay for your benefits. You may also need to file a lawsuit against your employer to get the benefits you deserve.
- What to Know About Returning to Work After an Injury
- Can You Receive Compensation for Cumulative Trauma through Workers’ Comp in California?
- Bloodborne Pathogens Included in Workplace Injuries
Understanding the Workers' Compensation Claims Process
The procedure of submitting a workers' compensation claim can be difficult and intimidating. Our knowledgeable work injury lawyers at Leigh Law Firm are there to help you at every stage. We are committed to assisting you in obtaining the compensation you are entitled to since we recognize the difficulties you may have when dealing with a workplace injury.
Here is a breakdown of the workers' compensation claims process:
- Report the injury: Report your workplace injury to your employer as soon as you can to ensure that your claim is properly documented and filed within the required timeframe. The deadline for taking action starts on the date you are injured at work. Failure to notify your employer within 30 days of your injury may result in the loss of your right to workers' comp benefits.
- Seek medical attention: Be sure to seek medical attention as soon as possible to establish a medical record that can support your claim.
- Receive workers' comp claim form (DWC-1) from your employer: If you do not receive one, you may also download one from the California Workers' Compensation website through their Forms Page.
- Submit the DWC-1 to your employer: This may be done in person or via certified mail via the U.S. Postal Service. Your employer should complete their section of the form and submit it to the insurance company -- they should also provide you with a copy.
- Insurance company response and investigation: Once your claim is filed, it will be reviewed and investigated by the workers' compensation insurance company. This may involve gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, and evaluating medical records. Your employer's insurance company must pay for your medical treatment while it is investigating the validity of your claim -- they are responsible for up to $10,000 in medical bills. If it your claim is not denied within 90 days, it is typically considered as "approved" however, it is best to speak with a skilled work injury lawyer.
- Appeals: If your claim is denied or you are unsatisfied with the settlement offer, our attorneys can help you file an appeal and represent your interests in court. We have the knowledge and experience to navigate the legal system and fight for the benefits you are entitled to.
Remember, time is of the essence when it comes to filing a workers' compensation claim. Contact Leigh Law Firm to schedule a free consultation and let us help you navigate the claims process and protect your rights.
Call our San Diego work injury lawyer today at (619) 473-7569 for more information. We can discuss your claim during a free consultation.
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