A Workers’ Comp injury in Virginia can be very complicated. Injured employees need to be mindful about protecting themselves so they don’t end up with a pile of unpaid medical bills and unable to work. Hiring a Richmond Workers’ Compensation lawyer can help guard against some of the common mistakes people make when filing a claim, and help those injured get the benefits they deserve.
What to Do When an Injury Occurs at Work
The first step in filing for Workers’ Compensation is to inform your employer of your injury. There may be time limits in place for an employee to notify their company about the injury, so it’s best to do it as soon as possible. You probably will be given an employee claim form to fill out. This is where the real process begins.
It is at this stage in your claim where you may want to contact a qualified Richmond Workers’ Compensation lawyer. An attorney can guide you through the paperwork and dealings you will have with your employer’s insurance carrier, Workers’ Compensation doctor, and claim paperwork.
Take Precautions to Save Your Claim
As you fill out your employee claim form, you need to be careful what you write and don’t write concerning the situation surrounding the incident. Describing how your injury happened and your physical concerns need to be detailed.
Experienced Workers’ Compensation lawyers often advise injured workers to relate all the areas on the body that feel even the slightest tinges of pain or uneasiness. This is important. A fall that causes severe pain to your shoulder and lesser aches around the neck and back area could develop into a serious neck or back injury. If an employee just mentions the shoulder on the claim form, or when speaking to the treating physician, the shoulder injury may be all that is covered under Workers’ Comp.
This is just one example in the process of a claim where you could inadvertently harm yourself and your deserved compensation.
Although we may all want to believe our employers will take responsibility for a legitimate injury that occurs at work, this isn’t always the case. Insurance companies are in the business to make money, and will do whatever it takes to pay out the least amount they have to in order to settle a Workers’ Comp claim.
What a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Can Do For You
As the process of a Workers’ Compensation claim gets underway, there are several things an attorney specialized in the area of Workers’ Comp can do for you, such as:
- Help support your claim – You will need to have documents that prove you are injured, and that your injury happened while at work. Your attorney will gather all medical records, employment records, witness statements, physical evidence, photographs, diagrams, and any other relevant information to prove your case.
- Completing necessary claim forms – Your attorney will make sure the forms you need are completed and returned to the appropriate offices on time, including your Claim for Benefits Form with the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission.
- Analyzing your case for additional compensation – Depending on how and why your injury occurred, there could be additional compensation avenues, such as product liability. You also may qualify for a Social Security disability claim or a third party claim. You must be careful when applying for other compensation, so that you don’t offset the other claims. An attorney may be able to help you get the most from your available benefit plans.
Finding a Qualified Richmond Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
In Richmond, the Injured Worker’s Law Firm has been protecting Virginia workers for over 20 years, and will advocate for your fair compensation. Call 804-755-7755, or 877-755-7744, for a consultation.
Learn more about your rights in our free Ultimate Guide to Workers’ Compensation in Virginia.