Louisiana Longshoreman Injury Lawyer
A generation ago, when dock workers mostly used small nets, platforms, and cranes to load and unload cargo, serious injuries were common. Now that longshoremen use huge nets, platforms, and cranes to load and unload cargo, the risk of serious injury is much higher. Falls and repetitive stress injuries, two of the most common workplace injuries, are good examples. Most people survive falls from less than four stories above ground. Higher falls are usually fatal. Similarly, repetitive bending, stooping, reaching, and kneeling with heavy loads causes a repetitive stress injury a lot faster than performing such activities with lighter loads.
The compassionate Louisiana longshoreman injury lawyer at Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe understands the financial and emotional impact of such injuries. Many of the people on our professional team have overcome similar challenges. Most people have very small savings accounts, so a temporary income disruption is devastating. Additionally, the medical bills in a serious injury case often exceed $50,000. So, our team works quickly to obtain the compensation these victims need and deserve.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Louisiana workers’ compensation benefits, which are available for trauma injuries and occupational diseases, usually include lost wage replacement and medical bill payment. These no-fault benefits do not require victims to prove fault, negligence, or anything else. However, issues are common.
Pre-existing conditions, which could affect trauma injuries and occupational diseases alike, are a good example. Phil’s bad ankle could contribute to the risk of a work-related fall or the injuries he sustains. Likewise, the loud noises at Phil’s workplace could adversely affect his hearing. However, Phil probably hears loud noises during his off-work hours as well.
Usually, pre-existing conditions don’t affect the amount of compensation. A Louisiana longshoreman injury lawyer must only prove that the pre-existing condition aggravated the work-related injury, as opposed to the other way around. Admittedly, that’s a very fine line. So, attorneys often partner with specialized doctors in these situations.
Speaking of the amount of compensation, this issue comes up a lot as well. For example, insurance adjusters quickly approve the cheapest medical treatment approach. However, they rarely approve the most effective approach.
The Workers’ Compensation Process in Louisiana
Legally, most injured workers must begin their claims within about ten days of their work-related injuries. A different rule often applies to occupational disease claims. Most victims don’t immediately see doctors when their joints are stiff, they have trouble breathing, or after other initial illness symptoms appear.
Back in the day, victims who filed workers’ compensation quickly obtained the benefits they needed. However, the initial denial rate has increased significantly in recent years. Usually, Claims Adjusters hope denials convince victims to drop their claims or settle them for much less than they’re worth. This approach often works, especially if the victim does not have an attorney at the initial stage.
At a subsequent Administrative Law Judge hearing, the environment shifts dramatically. Initial claims examinations are usually paper reviews that an insurance adjuster controls. At ALJ hearings, attorneys can introduce evidence, challenge evidence, and make legal arguments. This freedom greatly increases the chances of full claim payment.
Count On a Hard-Working Orleans Parish Attorney
Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced Louisiana longshoreman injury lawyer, contact Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe, LLC. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.