It is not unusual to sustain an injury or illness while on the job. Often, people in this situation suffer the consequences of not realizing they have the right to pursue compensation. Still, other workers do not file a workers’ compensation claim because they fear punishment from their employer or think it will be too much time or effort.
If you sustained an injury or developed an illness during your work duties, you probably have many questions. Talking to a Gainesville workers’ compensation lawyer could give you the answers you seek.
It could also spare you the headache and uncertainty of battling with the insurance company—allowing you to focus on your recovery.
Understanding Georgia’s Workers’ Compensation Laws
Knowing your basic rights concerning workers’ compensation in Gainesville will help you know how to proceed with your claim. First, you should know that the State Board of Workers’ Compensation (SBWC) requires any employer with at least three employees (full-time, part-time, or seasonal) to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
If your employer meets this criterion, they should carry this accident insurance that will pay you certain benefits if you sustain an injury on the job. You can confirm that the company you work for carries workers’ compensation insurance by searching the SBWC employer database.
Our workers’ compensation attorneys stand ready to appeal a denial on your behalf.
For a free legal consultation with a workers’ compensation lawyer serving Gainesville, call (404) 888-8888
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How Much Does Workers’ Compensation Insurance Pay in Gainesville?
The objective of workers’ compensation insurance benefits is to help you recover from your injury or illness and go back to work. As such, this type of program provides medical, rehabilitation, and income benefits.
The medical benefits you could receive depends on the extent and severity of your injury or illness and should cover:
- Medical treatment from doctors and surgeons
- Hospital stay
- Prescription medications
- Physical therapy
- Travel expenses
- Physical rehabilitation
- Vocational rehabilitation
The insurance provider will calculate your income benefits as a percentage of your income. The formula for weekly benefits is two-thirds of your weekly wages. This weekly amount cannot exceed $675 for injuries on or after July 1, 2019.
Some people find that they can go back to work, but their injury forces them to take a different job than they had—a job that pays less. In these cases, the workers receive a reduced benefit for up to 350 weeks from the date of the incident that caused their injury. This weekly amount cannot exceed $450.
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)
You could receive additional compensation if an authorized medical provider issues a disability rating for your injury or illness (in compliance with the American Medical Association Guidelines).
Gainesville Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Near Me (404) 888-8888
Taking the Right Steps After Your Injury
You must take certain steps after you suffer an injury on the job. These steps will help us present your case and protect your right to workers’ compensation.
- Report the accident to your supervisor, manager, or human resources department.
- Seek medical attention from a healthcare professional listed SWBC’s list of approved physicians.
- Follow the doctor’s instructions and do not deviate from them.
- Keep a journal of your injury, including an account of your symptoms and photos.
- Retain your lawyer so one of our workers’ compensation attorneys can help you file your workers’ compensation claim.
- Allow yourself to recover with plenty of rest.
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What Our Gainesville Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Do
Georgia laws do not require you to hire an attorney to file your workers’ compensation claim. However, you should know that how you present the facts of your case could impact your benefits, and our attorneys can help you get this presentation right.
Our workers’ compensation lawyers know Georgia’s laws, and we will apply them to help you get what you are due.
Leave the Paperwork to Us
We will guide you through the legal maze that lies ahead, ensuring that neither your employer nor their insurance provider takes advantage of you. Our legal team also relieves you of the burden of paperwork.
Our knowledge of Georgia’s workers’ compensation laws makes it easy to navigate all the forms and other documents that accompany the claims process.
Know the True Value of Your Case
Most importantly, our workers’ compensation attorneys know how to determine the true value of your case. Without this insight, it becomes very easy for the insurance company to talk workers into agreeing to lowball settlements that do not cover the workers’ treatment. We will negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.
We Take on the Insurance Companies so You Do not Have To
Our workers’ compensation lawyers also know that insurance companies do not make the claims process easy for claimants. Insurers have sophisticated technology, plenty of experience, and every financial incentive to reject your claim.
Some tactics they use to deny benefits include:
- Disputing the fact that your injury happened on the job
- Arguing that you are faking your injury
- Claiming that your injury is not serious
- Asserting that you cannot get a second opinion from your own physician
Our lawyers are prepared to fight these tactics and appeal the insurance company’s denial of your benefits.
Suing Your Employer for Your Work Injury
People often ask our workers’ compensation lawyers if a worker can sue their employer after an on-the-job injury or illness. The short answer is no, you cannot sue your employer. Your employer has agreed to pay your medical expenses and part of your wages for your injury, even if you were at fault for the accident that caused the injury.
In exchange for this latitude, you typically cannot sue your employer for your injury. This is just how workers’ compensation works.
Suing a Third Party for Your Work Injury
If a third party (someone other than your employer) caused your on-the-job injury, you could bring a third-party claim against the negligent individual or entity.
Why Pursue a Third-Party Claim if You Have Workers’ Compensation?
It is not uncommon for an injured worker to pursue this type of action, as workers’ compensation payments cover only medical expenses and a portion of the worker’s income.
In the case of third-party liability, however, the case becomes a matter of personal injury law. This means the worker could recover past and future medical expenses and past and future lost income.
This type of case also opens the door to receive non-economic damages, like pain and suffering, mental anguish, and so on—which are not payable in a workers’ compensation claim.
Common Types of Liable Third Parties
Examples of other parties whose negligence can cause an injury and prompt a third-party claim include:
- Manufacturers of defective products through product liability laws
- General contractors/subcontractors
- Property owners through premises liability laws
- Maintenance providers
- Trucking companies
If we can determine that a third party caused your injury, our lawyers can:
- Handle this case on your behalf
- Prove the third party’s liability
- Present your damages
- Negotiate a settlement
- Represent you in civil court
Securing benefits can be more complicated than just negotiating a workers’ compensation settlement. However, we can handle the entire case for you.
Our Lawyers Taking Gainesville Workers’ Compensation Cases is Here to Help You
After suffering an on-the-job injury, you should focus your efforts and energy on your recovery, returning to work, and reclaiming your life. There is no need for you to immerse yourself in the messy process of workers’ compensation.
Our Gainesville attorneys can move this matter off your plate, and our legal fees apply if we win your case. Call Bader Scott Injury Lawyers today for answers to your workers’ compensation questions and a free case consultation: (404) 888-8888.