Sustaining a serious job-related injury can be the beginning of many frustrations. Not only do you have to worry about your lost wages and increasing medical bills but also your future well-being in case the injury results in a permanent disability or condition. Fortunately, your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance coverage can grant you some respite.
Our Winston workers’ compensation lawyers can help you fight for your deserved benefits following a work-related injury. In Georgia, as long as you qualify as a worker and your accident or injury happened on the job or is work-related, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. But getting benefits can be complicated. Employers or the insurance company may try to deny your claim or try to pay less than you deserve.
Get in touch with our dedicated legal team at the Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Coalition by calling 470-518-5026 or filling out our online form. We offer free case evaluations.
Table of Contents
What Is Workers Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is a system or insurance program meant to help injured employees get workers’ compensation benefits. Typically, workers’ compensation pays for all your medical expenses, reimburses you for lost income, mileage costs, and compensates you for permanent disabilities.
However, it’s important to note that getting hurt at work doesn’t automatically make you eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Your injuries must arise from and in the course of employment to get these benefits.
What Should I Do If I Sustain a Work-Related Injury?
Here’s what you need to do if you are hurt at your job.
- Inform your employer about your workplace injury: Report your injury to your employer as soon as possible. Even if your employer witnessed the incident, report the injury. We recommend you do it in writing and keep a copy for yourself.
- Seek immediate medical attention: Get treatment for your injuries and remember to obtain your medical documents.
- Do what your doctor tells you: To avoid harming yourself further, follow your physician’s instructions to the letter.
- Document your injury: Make notes about your symptoms and injuries to help you dispel any suspicion about how severe your injuries are.
- Take pictures of your injury: Pictures of your injuries can prove that you were hurt while on the job. Make sure you take clear photos.
- Contact an experienced Winston workers’ compensation lawyer: Get in touch with a workers compensation attorney in Winston to help you file your claim. We offer free and confidential case reviews.
- File a workers’ compensation claim: Let your lawyer guide you on how to file a valid workers’ compensation claim.
- Finally, take some time off to rest and recover from your on-the-job injuries.
What Are the Most Common Work-Related Accidents & Injuries?
All employees can get hurt in the workplace, no matter the industry they work in. Some workplace accidents and injuries happen more frequently than others. They include:
- Construction accidents: Even with safety restrictions, construction sites are very hazardous. This is why workers tend to get injured from construction accidents.
- Electrocution: Employees tend to suffer injuries from being electrocuted at the workplace. It may be due to a bare electrical wire or a lack of safety protocols.
- Hearing Loss: Exposure to workplace noise over time often causes workers to develop hearing impairments.
- Overexertion: Workers who perform strenuous activities like heavy lifting often end up rapturing a tendon, pulling a muscle, or stretching a ligament.
- Repetitive motion injuries: The monotony of repeating something over and over again often causes employees to sustain repetitive motion injuries like carpal tunnel and tendonitis.
- Workplace violence: Disagreements happen everywhere, even at the workplace. Employees often get injured when workplace disagreements turn violent.
- Walking or running into objects: Employees usually get hurt after unknowingly walking or running into objects at work.
- Inhaling toxic fumes: Exposure to toxic fumes and chemicals usually causes internal or respiratory injuries or illnesses to workers over time.
- Cuts and lacerations: Work accidents that involve workers getting cut or lacerated are common. The use of sharp implements like paper trimmers and power saws makes these accidents common.
- Being struck by falling objects: Workers usually get hurt after getting hit by falling objects. This is surprisingly a prevalent accident, especially in large warehouses and stores.
Why Should I Hire a Winston Workers’ Compensation Lawyer?
Filing a claim without an attorney is possible but daunting, and you risk having your claim for medical and financial benefits denied. An attorney will work with you and protect your interests from the get-go to:
Maximize Your Workers’ Comp Benefits
Your average weekly wages will determine your workers’ comp benefits. But, insurance companies will try to reduce your benefits as much as possible. Without an attorney on your side, insurers will take advantage of your inexperience and lowball you. A lawyer knows the underhand tactics that insurers use and can counter these tactics to maximize your benefits.
Make Court Appearances
If your claim is denied, a workers’ compensation attorney can file an appeal with the Board of Workers’ Compensation and represent you in the hearing. Also, you may need to rest. A lawyer can save you the hassle of attending court sessions, allowing you ample time to recuperate.
Protect Your Employee Rights
The Workers Compensation Act has many complex terms and legal jargon. Being an ordinary person, you might not understand The Workers Compensation Act or the terminologies. As such, the insurance company may take advantage and try to trick or misguide you. An attorney will help protect and exercise your rights as an employee.
Protect Your Future Needs
A lawyer can protect your future needs by ensuring you get all the benefits you are entitled to, including medical benefits, Medicare, and Social Security disability benefits.
Pursue a Third-Party Liability Claim
When a co-worker is responsible for your workplace injury, an attorney can help you file a third-party liability claim. A workers’ compensation attorney can tell you if a third-party claim is plausible.
Ultimately, you will have the best chance for your Winston workers’ compensation claim with our attorneys at the Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition.
How Much Will It Cost You to Hire a Winston Workers’ Compensation Attorney?
Since workers’ compensation attorneys work on a contingency basis, you will not pay upfront lawyer fees. We only get paid if you get benefits. The State Board of Workers’ Compensation must approve any fee greater than $100.00. The Board will not approve a fee greater than 25% of the employee’s award of weekly benefits or settlement.
What Should I Do If My Workers’ Compensation Claim Is Denied?
Has your genuine workers’ compensation claim been denied in Winston, GA? Don’t panic; workers’ compensation claims in Winston are denied for various reasons. So remain calm and consider your legal options.
Involving a Winston workers’ compensation lawyer at this stage can make a world of difference for your case. Your attorney can help you decide whether an appeal is the best option and even appeal the denial on your behalf by requesting a hearing with the State Board of Workers’ Compensation.
What Are the Employers’ Responsibilities in Workers’ Comp?
Employers in Georgia have certain responsibilities in the workers’ compensation process.
- Providing employees with information about their rights as Georgia employees and the claim process.
- Supplying workers with WC-14 claims within 24 hours of learning about the accident.
- Reporting the work-related injury to the workers’ compensation insurance carrier.
- Collaborating with investigators and complying with their requests.
- Welcoming employees back to work after they recover from their injuries.
- Helping Georgia’s State Workers’ Compensation Board to curb fraudulent workers’ compensation activities.
What Are the Employee’s Responsibilities in a Workers’ Comp Claim?
As an employee, you have the following responsibilities:
- Reporting your injury to your employer right away or within 30 days in writing.
- Notifying your employer and their insurance company in writing that you are ready to resume work once you have made a full recovery.
- Attempting a different job even if it pays less as long as your WC physician approves it.
- Notifying your employer and their insurance provider upon relocation, remarriage, or change of address.
- Submitting to a drug test if requested by investigative parties.
- Being honest and truthful for the entirety of the claims process.
Can I Be Fired for Claiming Workers’ Comp Benefits?
No. Georgia laws don’t allow employers to discriminate against employees for claiming workers’ comp benefits. Your employer cannot fire, demote, or retaliate against you in any way.
Is There a Deadline to File a Workers’ Comp Claim in Winston, GA?
Yes. Time limits for filing a workers’ comp claim in Winston, Georgia, are:
- One year after the work-related accident date; or
- One year from the latest payment made for authorized treatment; or
- Two years since your latest workers’ compensation cheque.
Can I Sue My Employer?
No, you cannot sue your employer because a no-fault system guides workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation relinquishes your right to sue your boss in exchange for workers’ compensation benefits.
Are Independent Contractors Eligible for Workers’ Comp Benefits?
Independent contractors are not classified as employees in Georgia. This means that they do not qualify for workers’ comp benefits. But, if the employer controls the means, manner, and time of employment, an independent contractor may be eligible for workers’ comp benefits.
What Is My Winston Workers’ Compensation Claim Worth?
Your workers’ comp claim will pay for:
- Any medical treatment provided by an authorized treating physician(s).
- Rehabilitation and vocational training to get you new skills.
- Prescription drugs
- Mileage costs: Workers’ comp will cover the travel expenses for all the trips you made to and from doctors’ appointments.
- Your lost wages: Workers’ compensation benefits will cover two-thirds of what your average weekly income.
- PPD (Permanent Partial Disability) benefits if your authorized doctor determines that your disability or injury rating satisfies the disability criteria according to the American Medical Association Guidelines.
Contact Our Winston Workers’ Compensation Lawyers
Are your job-related injuries keeping you away from work? Whatever the case, if you suffered a job-related injury or illness, contact the Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition in Winston, Georgia. We are dedicated to helping our clients obtain the medical benefits and financial compensation they need to help them get on with their lives after an on-the-job accident.
Contact our Winston workers’ compensation attorneys when you’re ready at 470-518-5026 . We offer confidential and charge-free consultation and take workers’ compensation cases on contingency.