by Casaundra Johnson | Jan 19, 2017 | General Information
After being injured at work, one of the many questions that injured workers often struggle with is whether it is necessary to hire an attorney to represent them in their claim. There is no law that requires injured workers to have an attorney for their workers’ compensation claim, so deciding whether to hire an attorney is a matter of personal choice. However, the workers’ compensation system is complex, and unrepresented injured workers often find themselves overwhelmed by the various nuances in the law and wholly unprepared to argue against opposing parties and their representatives at the hearing. Thus, while there are some injured workers who choose to represent themselves throughout their entire claim, most injured workers are unable to manger their workers’ compensation claims on their own and ultimately end up hiring an attorney.
Hiring a qualified attorney is essential to ensure your rights are protected and you are receiving all the benefits you are entitled to under the law. While it may not be necessary in extremely simple cases, hiring an attorney is critical in many situations, such following:
- Your employer denies that you were an employee.
- Your employer denies that you were injured at work.
- Your claim is denied in its entirety (for any reason).
- You have been diagnosed with an occupational disease but are unsure how to prove it was caused by your employment.
- You cannot get medical treatment for your work-related conditions.
- You are off work due to your work injury but are not getting paid.
- The claims adjuster promises benefits or care which never arrives.
- Your employer’s attorney or insurance company contacts you and wants to take a deposition.
- You are terminated from your employment because you filed a workers’ compensation claim.
- You want to sue a third person (someone other than your employer) due to their role in your work injury.
- You are representing yourself and encounter someone from the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) or on the Employer’s side who is particularly difficult to deal and/or is trying to take advantage of your lack of legal expertise.
These are some of the situations that could arise in your claim and have significant short- and long-term impacts on your eligibility and/or entitlement to benefits. It is important to keep in mind, however, that there are many other problems you could face that can end up having a negative impact your claim, either now or at some point in the future. You should consider consulting with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible if you encounter any of these situations, are facing any other challenges in your claim, or are just unsure whether you are getting all the benefits you are entitled to under the law.
If you were injured at work and need an attorney to assist you in your workers’ compensation claim, contact The Bainbridge Firm, LLC, for help. Our experienced attorneys can help you navigate the obstacles that may arise in your claim and fight to secure the benefits you deserve.
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