Compensation in a Job Injury Claim
Originally, the agreement between workers and management known as the Grand Bargain sped benefits to injured workers, so they could quickly get back on the job. Today, the workers’ compensation system is a bloated bureaucracy dominated by insurance company interests.
Yet the injuries these victims sustain are more serious than ever, mostly because of advancing technology. So, their need for prompt compensation is more acute than ever.
A New Orleans workers’ compensation attorney cannot speed up time. However, a lawyer can fight for victims and obtain the compensation they deserve. Much of this fight involves thorough preparation. Additionally, once an attorney obtains an award, this award is usually retroactive to the filing date.
Types of Workplace Injuries
There are basically two types of workplace injuries. The injuries which happen at construction sites are a good example.
Falls, electrocutions, and caught-between injuries are examples of trauma injuries. Caught-between injuries usually involve a victim trapped between colliding motor vehicles or between a vehicle and a wall or other fixed object. These injuries happen suddenly and without warning.
Frequently, these victims have pre-existing conditions which contribute to their workplace injuries. For example, fall injuries typically do not heal 100 percent. So, the injuries in a repeat fall are often much worse.
A variation of the eggshell skull rule protects these victims. Basically, insurance companies cannot use the victim’s vulnerabilities as an excuse to reduce or deny compensation. Instead, full benefits are available. These benefits are outlined below.
Chemical exposure and repetitive stress are examples of occupational diseases. These injuries occur slowly and over time.
Generally, these victims do not go to the doctor at the first sign of trouble. Instead, they try to live with their illnesses for months or even years. As a result, by the time they obtain treatment, their conditions are quite serious. Also by this time, the workers’ compensation claim deadline has usually passed.
A variation of the discovery rule protects these victims. Injured workers are not required to start the claims process until they discover the full extent of their injuries and they connect those injuries to their work environments.
Workers’ compensation benefits usually include medical bill payment and lost wage replacement.
Generally, the insurance company pays all reasonably necessary medical expenses. This category includes everything from the first day of emergency or other care to the last day of physical or occupational therapy.
Frequently, an attorney can arrange for medical treatment at no upfront cost. Most providers agree to defer billing until the case is resolved. Additionally, most Louisiana job injury victims may choose their own doctors.
Workers’ compensation also replaces lost wages. Victims with temporary disabilities usually receive two-thirds of their average weekly wage until they are able to return to work. The average weekly wage includes all regular and irregular cash and non-cash compensation. Victims with permanent disabilities usually receive lump sum payments. The amount varies, based on the nature of the disability, severity of the disability, and some other factors.
Connect with a Hard-Working Attorney
All types of job injury victims could be entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in New Orleans, contact Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe, PLLC. Home, virtual, and hospital visits are available.