If you’re dealing with a workers’ compensation claim, it can be frustrating. There is an abundance of paperwork, doctor’s appointments, and phone calls that can make your head spin. If you’re in over your head, then it’s time to hire a workers’ compensation lawyer. Here are seven critical questions that you’ll want to ask before hiring them.
Does My Situation Meet Eligibility Requirements For Workers’ Compensation?
Not everyone who is injured on the job qualifies for workers’ compensation. For this reason, it’s a good idea to explain your entire situation with a potential lawyer. This way, they can assess the facts and give you a definitive answer of whether or not your claim will be covered.
What Workers’ Compensation Benefits Am I Entitled To?
It’s best to get straight to the point when talking with your lawyer. You’ll want to ask what sort of benefits you’ll be entitled to. Many people are familiar with short-term pay for days that you’re unable to work. However, what happens for long-term disabilities? Your workers’ compensation lawyer should be able to clearly answer you regarding what types of benefits you’re entitled to because of your injury.
Am I Required To Work?
Your employer naturally wants to limit the amount of money that gets paid out in workers’ compensation. Therefore, they may try to get you to return to work. Sometimes this is feasible if the work they offer you takes your injury care into consideration. However, other times it can be inconceivable. You should ask your lawyer to clarify if and why you must return to work.
How Long Will This Process Take?
Each workers’ compensation claim can be different from the next person’s. You may read a forum post about one person spending days in court trying to win their case. However, you may read another where a person gets their claim approved in a few short weeks. A lawyer should have experience with cases like yours and be able to offer some guidance on how long the claims process will take. They should be able to reveal the likelihood of your case going to court as well.
What Is Your Experience With Workers’ Compensation Claims?
When hiring a lawyer to represent you throughout your workers’ compensation claim, it’s imperative that they have experience in that area of the law. Many general practice or family law attorneys may opt to take on your claim. However, they don’t solely deal with workers’ compensation claims. Instead, you want to ensure that the lawyer you’re going to hire is highly experienced in dealing with workers’ compensation claims.
What Are Your Rates And Fees?
Most workers’ compensation attorneys will charge based on a contingency structure. This translates to them taking a set percentage of the settlement offer or judgment that you win. Each state has its own maximum amounts that an attorney can charge for their services. You’ll find an average percentage to be between 15 and 20 percent of the amount of the claim. According to the contingency structure, your lawyer will not get paid unless you reach a settlement or win your case.
Should I Talk To The Claims Administrator?
Every claim will be handled by a claims administrator. This is a person who works for the workers’ compensation insurance company that your employer has a policy with. They’re responsible for collecting details about your claim and offering information about various medical treatments that are available to you. You should not talk with your claims administrator until you consult your attorney. They can instruct you on what to say and what to avoid saying to your claims administrator.
When you’re thinking about hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer, you probably have a lot of questions on your mind. The reality is that there are many things you’ll need to learn from a potential hire before enlisting their help with your claims case. The above seven questions are a great place to get you started.