It is more common than you might think for insurance companies to deny work injury victims the benefits they deserve. Fortunately, with help from an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer, you can get help dealing with the insurance company.
You can take several steps when workers’ comp does not sufficiently meet your needs. Here is more about how you can secure the benefits you are entitled to.
What Workers’ Compensation Benefits Should Cover
When you initially find out that your workers’ compensation insurance claim does not cover certain damages, you may be shocked, annoyed, yet worried about your future. However, the insurance company is only required to cover specific damages and only up to certain amounts based on how much coverage the policyholder purchased. Generally, when you file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits, you can expect to collect the following:
- Disability benefits to cover a percentage of your lost income, usually around 66%
- Total coverage of your work-related injuries and medical expenses, including any future or ongoing medical care
- Vocational rehabilitation benefits so you can find work in another industry if your injuries prevent you from continuing in your current profession
- Death benefits for the surviving family members of individuals who succumb to fatal work injuries
Unfortunately, these are the only types of damages you can recover through a workers’ compensation insurance claim.
As you can see, there are many other damages you have likely experienced in your on-the-job accident. That does not mean you cannot receive compensation for them. However, your attorney must consider other options if you hope to get justice.
Get a Workers Comp Lawyer on Your Side
When you find out that your workers’ compensation benefits are insufficient, you first need to get a workers comp attorney working on your case. Your lawyer will then review the type of work injury you sustained and the accident you were involved in and determine whether you can take additional legal action against those responsible for causing her injuries.
Remember, workers’ compensation benefits are paid out on a no-fault basis. As long as you can show that your injuries were sustained in a work-related accident, the insurance company is required to compensate you no matter who is responsible for causing it, as long as you were not violating your company’s code of conduct.
Renegotiate Your Workers Comp Settlement
Next, if the insurance company attempts to settle your claim for less than it is worth, renegotiating your settlement offer is one of your top options. Your workers’ compensation attorney can handle the insurance company and show them how seriously you take your case.
That way, you have access to the compensation you are entitled to. However, do not be surprised if, even after renegotiating with the insurance company, there are still other damages the insurer is not obligated to cover.
Determine Alternative Legal Options
Your workers’ compensation lawyer will review the specific details of your case to determine whether you can explore other legal options to recover the compensation and benefits you need to get through these difficult times.
Can You File Another Type of Insurance Claim?
First, we will consider whether you can file another type of insurance claim. For example, suppose you were involved in a work-related car accident in addition to filing a workers’ compensation insurance claim.
You could also file a claim with the liable party’s auto insurance provider in that case. This way, you can recover property damages and other losses not typically covered through workers comp.
Bringing Your Case to Court
Bringing your case to court could be another viable option. Sometimes, you do not have the authority to collect workers’ compensation benefits and file a civil lawsuit against the liable party. However, this is only true for some cases.
Suppose your workers’ compensation lawyer can show another party’s negligence or misconduct contributed to your injuries. In that case, you could have the right to compensation and benefits through a civil lawsuit settlement. When your claim goes to trial, you have your best opportunity to recover your damages in full.
In civil court, you can seek restitution for not only economic damages but non-economic damages as well. Examples of some of the damages you could recoup in civil court include:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress in psychological trauma
- Reduce the quality of life
- Disfigurement and skin scarring
- Reduced earning capacity
- Loss of consortium
Factors Impacting Your Compensation
Several factors are considered when determining the value of your workers’ comp and personal injury damages, and the compensation you should be awarded accordingly.
The Severity of Your Injuries
First, the severity of your injuries is going to play the message. When you file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits, the amount you can recover in the form of disability benefits will vary depending on the severity of your injuries. Similarly, if your case goes to civil court, how your injuries have affected your life will determine the value of your economic and non-economic damages.
If you are accused of sharing liability for your injuries, this will impact your case if it goes to civil court. However, sharing liability for causing a work-related injury will not affect the amount of compensation you can recover through your workers’ comp claim unless you intentionally inflicted your injuries or were violating your employer’s code of conduct.
Get Help from a Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today
It is more common than you might think for work injury victims to be taken advantage of or denied the benefits they deserve. Thankfully, when you have a dedicated workers’ compensation attorney at Shelly Leeke Law Firm on your case, you will not have to worry about being taken advantage of or denied the benefits you deserve.
If the insurance company does not cover certain damages, our firm will be prepared to bring your case to trial, so you recover total compensation for your suffering. Learn more about what is next for your workers’ comp insurance plan when you fill out our online contact form or call our office to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation today.