If you’ve ever filed for unemployment compensation claims only to be told that you were denied benefits, then you may know how many of our clients feel. Our firm represents hundreds of people every year who were injured at work and were then denied workers compensation benefits. To the average person, this doesn’t seem possible. However, to our Atlanta workers comp lawyers, it seems completely possible because we’ve seen it happen over and over again.
As unfortunate as it may be to have your claim denied, it’s also important to understand the reality of workers compensation in Georgia. If your benefits have been denied, then you are in the minority. According to recent reports, more than 90% of all workers compensation claims in Georgia are approved the first time they were submitted. What this means is that there’s something unique about your case. Perhaps your claim raised a red flag or captured the attention other claims adjuster. Your workers comp lawyer in Georgia we will be able to review all the information available to them and figure out what that one thing is. They will then help you determine whether you want to file an appeal or file a lawsuit against your employer.
We do offer a free, initial consultation to all new potential clients. Therefore, it’s in your best interests to contact our office and set up a date and time to come in and meet with want of our Atlanta workers comp lawyers.
Most Workers Compensation Claims are Actually Approved
The fact that you’re reading this article means you may be surprised to learn that more than 90% of all workers compensation claims are initially approved. This means that nine times out of 10, employees who were injured on the job receive their workers compensation benefits without any problem. If that’s the case, you may wonder why there are so many Atlanta workers comp lawyers in Georgia. This is because, although 10% may seem like a low number, it still means that thousands of workers are denied the benefits they deserve every year.
There are various reasons why employers or their insurance carriers may choose to deny a workers claim. Some of these include the following:
- the employer does not believe your injury took place on company time
- you have a pre-existing condition
- your employer thinks you’re exaggerating your injuries
- you haven’t been an employee for very long
- you have a history of filing workers compensation claims
- you tested positive for drugs immediately after your workplace accident
Obviously, this list is not exhaustive. There are many other reasons why your workers compensation claim may have been denied. There are also times when you would have been approved but you happen to hold a job that makes you ineligible for workers compensation benefits. If this is the case with you, you need to call a workers comp lawyer in Georgia as soon as possible.
Were Your Compensation Claims Denied or Were You Not Eligible for Workers Compensation?
As mentioned above, it may not be that your workers compensation claim was denied because you did something wrong. There is always a chance that you were denied benefits because you aren’t eligible for workers compensation in the first place. This is because there are certain categories of workers who are not eligible for workers compensation benefits in Georgia. In fact, people who work in these groups are not eligible for benefits anywhere in the country.
Two of these categories include federal employees and railroad workers. While they’re not entitled to workers compensation, there are special programs available for these workers in case they get injured on the job. For many other workers, however, they don’t even have this protection. Some of these groups include the following:
- seasonal and casual employees
- temporary employees
- domestic servants such as housekeepers and nannies
- agricultural workers
- independent contractors
There are a few other groups that could be listed here. However, they’re not very common occupations so they will not be discussed at this time. If you happen to belong to any of these groups, you have zero protection under the law if you get injured at work. Your only option will be to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer.
Your Workers Comp Lawyer in Georgia Can Always File an Appeal on Your Behalf
It is important to understand, that if your benefits were denied because your employer does not believe you’ve met the requirements, your Atlanta workers comp lawyer can file an appeal on your behalf. If this is something you’re interested in doing, make sure you’re honest and upfront with your lawyer when you first meet with them. If you know deep down that you do not meet these requirements, let your attorney know. It would not be fair to waste either your time or theirs.
Before You Panic, Meet with One of Our Seasoned Atlanta Workers Comp Lawyers
By the time we meet with a new client who’s been denied workers compensation, they are usually quite angry and quite frustrated. For some of them, having something like this happened after they’ve worked for the same company for more than 10 years is a slap in the face. For others, they’re angry and they don’t think it’s fair that nobody ever explains to them that they weren’t eligible for workers compensation because they weren’t technically an employee. Our Atlanta workers comp lawyers understand exactly how you’re feeling.
Our associates have decades of combined experience handling workers compensation cases. We’ve represented people whose claims were based on a technicality. We’ve also represented clients who we were surprised we were able to get benefits for them on appeal. The important thing is that this is not the time to panic or make rash decisions.
You need to sit down with a worker’s comp lawyer in Georgia and find out what your rights are. Since we offer all new clients a free, initial consultation, you can do this for absolutely no charge. While we cannot guarantee a particular outcome, we can promise you that we will do everything in our power to help you get the benefits you deserve. And if getting workers compensation benefits is not possible, we can always check to see if you have a right to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer.
We recommend that you contact our office and speak with an Atlanta workers comp lawyer as soon as possible after your workplace accident. The sooner your employer knows you have retained an attorney, the sooner they will start taking your case more seriously.