Monroe & West Monroe Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Monroe is Louisiana’s eighth-largest city and together with West Monroe, it forms the second-largest metropolitan area in the state. The two cities are called the Twin Cities of northern Louisiana and use the combined motto, “One City, One Future.” More than 50,000 people live in Monroe, plus another 20,000 live in West Monroe.
The two cities are known for their blend of urban living and natural beauty that comes from numerous area wildlife refuges and river waterscapes. Northern Louisiana river country has a famously hot, humid climate. This is the home of the University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM) and the well-known A&E TV show, “Duck Dynasty.”
Monroe & West Monroe Workers’ Compensation Claims
After a workplace injury in Monroe & West Monroe, Louisiana, hiring an experienced Monroe & West Monroe workers’ compensation lawyer is the smartest decision you’ll ever make. Few law firms practice workers’ compensation as extensively as we do at Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe. We have the experience it takes to handle your case because we specialize in Louisiana workers’ compensation claims.
Were you wrongfully terminated? Did your employer ignore your needs after being injured or denied workers’ compensation? Please contact us as soon as possible. You don’t have to navigate the complex world of workers’ compensation alone because we’re here to guide you through the process every step of the way.
Workers’ Compensation Injuries We Handle
Here in Monroe & West Monroe, your workers’ compensation claim can cover any traumatic injury or occupational illness that occurs in the course of your employment with a Louisiana employer. Some of the most common and serious workers’ compensation claims we take on include:
Back, Neck, and Spinal Injuries
When you suffer a severe injury to your neck or back, it can disrupt your career and your life. You could be unable to perform your usual work duties or enjoy your personal time the way you used to. This limits your ability to accomplish things and bring in your usual paycheck.
Sometimes these injuries happen suddenly as a result of an unexpected catastrophe. They can also develop slowly over time due to repetitive stress or impacts. Either way, your employer might be unsympathetic to your suffering and try to avoid your much-deserved workers’ compensation claim.
First Responder Illnesses
First responders address dangerous situations head-on, which is why they’re often left with serious injuries and illnesses that require workers’ compensation. This includes diseases and injuries that arise from natural disasters, violent crimes, public health crises, and extremely physically demanding work.
Reach out to our workers’ compensation lawyers if you’re experiencing negative health consequences due to first responder work. We help with cases that involve heart disease, lung disease, cancer, post-traumatic stress disorder, hepatitis, hearing loss, and much more.
Broken bones, bone fractures, and stress fractures can all cause someone to need workers’ compensation to properly heal and get back to work. You may need the care of an orthopedic doctor or surgeon to help you restore full health and mobility.
Employers sometimes downplay these injuries because they take so much time and money to heal. If your employer is being difficult about the surgery and rehabilitation you need to get back to work, contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
Knee and Shoulder Injuries
Your large, jointed areas like your knees and shoulders are important for the body’s mobility. When you have a knee or shoulder injury, any amount of moving can become excruciating and may prevent you from working and living normally.
Do you have a shoulder or knee issue that you acquired at work? Are you facing surgery or rehabilitation? Your employer should never interfere with your ability to be properly diagnosed and treated for your injuries. Seek help from a workers’ compensation lawyer who understands how to support you in pursuing the full compensation you deserve.
Monroe & West Monroe Workers’ Compensation Claims Process
You’ve probably seen workplace posters that encourage employees to report workplace accidents promptly. That seems simple enough, right? Not so fast!
All too often, employees report workplace illnesses and injuries, only to discover that their employer doesn’t want to hear what they have to say. Employers sometimes drag their feet, fail to report injuries to the proper authorities, and bully employees into silence.
You deserve fair treatment under the law and you might be entitled to workers’ compensation for your injury or illness. Without the right lawyer, you’re at risk of accidentally putting your workers’ compensation claim at risk of being denied or underpaid.
An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer looks out for your best interests and helps you understand how the process works. Here’s how the process typically progresses for the average workers’ compensation claim.
Immediate employer notification is a must. As soon as you’re aware of your workplace injury or illness, contact your supervisor and ensure your employer starts the process right away. Louisiana has a reporting deadline of 30 days, but the sooner you make your report the sooner the process starts.
Filing Your Claim
Your employer is obligated to notify their insurance carrier and the state of Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Commission (WCC) including its workers’ comp carrier. If your employer fails to do so, this is a red flag that they’re handling the process improperly.
Appealing When Necessary
Wage replacement may start fairly quickly, but if not, there’s a chance that you’ll need to file an appeal. This involves filing paperwork with the Workforce Commission to secure your coverage.
An appeal is usually followed by an official hearing with an administrative law judge where you’ll hear the results of your appeal. This may involve yet another appeal to the Louisiana Supreme Court, if necessary.
Retaining a Lawyer
Many people don’t consider hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer until late in the process. This can be a mistake because you may already be fairly far along and some deadlines may have passed. Retain a lawyer as soon as possible to give yourself the best chance of a successful claim.
How Do I Know If I Have a Case?
You might be wondering whether you have a case for workers’ compensation, especially if your employer is trying to downplay your concerns. Here’s how to find out: Contact us for an initial consultation with a lawyer who specializes in workers’ compensation.
Your lawyer will meet with you and listen to your story about your workplace illness or occupational disease. They will then sort through the legal matters and help you understand your legal options so you can decide on your next steps. An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer has a thorough understanding of the relevant laws and knows how to pursue your most likely positive outcome.
Here at Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe, we provide valuable assistance with an array of time-consuming legal tasks related to workers’ compensation claims. We can offer extensive help with communicating with involved parties, locating documents, meeting deadlines, understanding legal terms, filing appeals, and handling the complexities of your case.
What Kind of Compensation Could I Recover?
Workers’ compensation varies depending on many factors including your pay level and your ability to work. Contact us for a consultation about your potential level of compensation.
Generally speaking, in Louisiana you can gain compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and ongoing care costs. To learn more, please see our Louisiana workers’ compensation benefits page. Here’s a summary of the benefits you may be able to secure.
All Louisiana employers are required to offer compensation that covers any traumatic injury or occupational illness that occurs in the course of employment. This means workers can seek coverage for medical care for the injury, indemnity wage benefits, vocational rehabilitation services, and/or death benefits.
In terms of medical expenses, workers’ comp should cover reasonable and necessary:
- Emergency room bills
- Doctor/hospital bills
- Medical supplies
- Nursing services
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy
- Mileage reimbursement
Wage replacement is also available for Louisiana’s injured and ill employees. These benefits follow a hierarchy which is summarized below.
Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
TTD is paid when you’re entirely unable to work, but your disability is not expected to be permanent. This usually amounts to two-thirds of your weekly wages up to a state-mandated maximum.
Supplemental Earnings Benefits (SEB)
When you can return to work but with restrictions, you can pursue SEB. During this time, you can’t perform the same job duties as before you were injured but you can do some level of work.
Levels of work include light duty, modified duty, and work hardening. As their names imply, these are staggered levels of work that allow you to work in a safe and achievable way. It’s possible to receive some level of compensation for up to 520 weeks.
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)
At the point of maximum medical improvement, a doctor has decided that you’re unlikely to progress further in your recovery. You are permanently disabled, but only partially. This usually involves significant disfigurement, hearing loss, or impairment to the functions of your respiratory, gastrointestinal, or genito-urinary systems.
Permanent Total Disability (PTD)
PTD benefits are payable when your injury is so permanent and severe that you are unable to work again. It is generally paid at a rate of two-thirds of your average weekly wage before you were injured.
Catastrophic Injury Benefits
You may also be eligible for catastrophic injury benefits in a lump sum up to $50,000 for paraplegia, quadriplegia, amputation, eye loss, third-degree burns, or other severe injuries. Talk to your workers’ compensation lawyer about your eligibility.
When an employee dies within two years of a job-related accident or illness, their surviving spouse and/or dependent children can request weekly indemnity benefits under the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act. When there are no surviving dependents, surviving older children or parents can request a one-time benefit of $75,000 plus reasonable burial expenses up to $8,500.
Dedicated, Professional Legal Help With Monroe & West Monroe Workers’ Compensation Matters
Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe protects your rights and will fight for the maximum workers’ compensation possible under the law. We’re here to help you recover physically, emotionally, and financially from a workplace injury or occupational disease.
After reviewing your medical records and billing, we’ll verify the extent of your injuries and what your future prognosis is. If you’ve been severely injured or if your employer is putting up a fight, we may need to retain medical experts and vocational experts to provide additional insights.
Knowing what workers’ compensation law requires is one thing; standing up for your rights is another. Our professional, dedicated team has years of experience with workers’ compensation cases. We’re here to help you secure the compensation you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation at 504-788-2994.