Benefits Available To Head Injury Victims
Even though work-related head injuries are among the most common such wounds in the United States, significant diagnosis and treatment issues persist. Many head injury victims don’t realize they are hurt. Concussed athletes often want to go right back in the game and concussed soldiers often want to go immediately back on duty. So, by the time many victims seek treatment, their head injuries are more difficult, and more expensive, to address.
As outlined below, if a head injury happens at work, a Lake Charles workers’ compensation lawyer can usually obtain substantial benefits for victims. Since workers’ comp is no-fault insurance, full benefits are usually available even if the victim’s own negligence, or a pre-existing condition, contributed to the injury in some way. Because these injuries are so serious, victims need full benefits to get back to work quickly.
Medical Bill Payment
Some combination of surgery and physical therapy usually treats brain injury symptoms effectively. The injury itself is always permanent. Unlike other cells in the body, after brain cells die, they never regenerate. Therefore, making the symptoms manageable is the best possible outcome in these situations.
Brain surgery does not cure the wound. But it does reduce swelling and prevent the brain from pressing against the inside of the skull. So, the injury at least doesn’t get any worse.
This surgery is extremely complex. Fortunately, most Louisiana job injury victims can choose their own doctors. Since they can go directly to a brain surgeon or other specialist, surgery often has a higher chance of success and a shorter recovery period.
Workers’ compensation doesn’t just pay surgical bills. It also covers related expenses, such as transportation costs, emergency care, and follow-up care.
Brain injury physical therapy is often long and intense. Studies show that the longer therapy lasts, the better the results. That’s because brain injury physical therapists must train uninjured areas of the brain to assume lost functions. In Louisiana, workers’ compensation benefits last for up to 520 weeks (ten years). So, victims have plenty of time to get better.
Lost Wage Replacement
Wage replacement is critical in head injury cases. If victims and their families had no money coming in, they would most likely settle their claims for less than they are worth, just to get the matter over with.
If the victim has a temporary disability, which means s/he can go back on the job, workers’ compensation usually pays two-thirds of the victim’s average weekly wage for the duration of that temporary disability.
The average weekly wage looks forward as well as backward. Victims are entitled to more than their average pay over the past several months. If their injuries cause them to miss overtime opportunities or bonus payments, the AWW must account for these items.
Permanently disabled victims are usually entitled to lump sum payments. The amount of the payment usually depends on the nature and severity of the disability.
Connect with a Tough Louisiana Attorney
Work-related head injury victims are entitled to substantial benefits. For a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in New Orleans, contact Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe, PLLC. After-hours visits are available.