One of the more complicated areas of the law deals with Virginia Workers’ Compensation benefits. Pursuing a Virginia Workers’ Compensation claim can take a long time, especially if a claim is denied or if you find yourself in the midst of a Workers’ Compensation appeal.
You may benefit from the help of a Richmond, Virginia, attorney who handles these types of claims when you face the potentially difficult and lengthy process of seeking benefits. Or if you believe that your claim was denied wrongfully, an attorney may be able to help.
Dealing with a Workers’ Compensation Denial
Often, you may find yourself in a position where your claim for benefits is accepted after a work-related injury but is thendenied in whole or in part.This would mean that although you were expecting to receive Virginia Workers’ Compensation benefits, they may not actually be available.
One reason this potentially could happen is if it is discovered that at the time of your work injury, your employer did not have the minimum required number of employees. In order for a worker to file a Virginia Workers’ Compensation claim, you must work for someone who has at least 3 employees regularly in service.
Employers that employ fewer than 3 employees are not subject to paying benefits under Workers’ Compensation, even if you are injured while on the job. Although this may sound like it could not happen, there are circumstances when this could become confusing.
For instance, an employer may hire a handful of contractors to perform some work duties. If one is injured while working, it would appear that the contractor would be eligible for Virginia Workers’ Compensation benefits. However, the details surrounding the circumstances could have an impact.
Let’s say that the injured worker never returned to the job. Then a few days later, another contractor fails to return as well. The employer may decide at this point not to bother replacing the contractors and to finish the work himself. Later on, the third worker decides to come back and help finish up.
The injured worker may be awarded Virginia Workers’ Compensation based on the fact that at the time of the accident, the employer had 3 employees. The problem with this is that it does not matter how many workers were employed at the time of an injury; it is based on whether or not there are at least 3 employees regularly in service.
To be considered regularly in service, it must be established that the workers were contracted regularly for work or were used for an extended period of time. If someone works for just a day and a half, that likely would not be considered regularly in service, and Workers’ Compensation does not have to be granted.
These scenarios can make the process of pursuing a Virginia Workers’ Compensation claim even more difficult. When contractors and sub-contractors come into play, it may completely change the outcome.
Determining regular employees versus non-regular employees to claim Workers’ Compensation can be frustrating. There may be other complications that come into play as well.
Some of the other complications you may face include:
- insurers examining your old medical records to find a pre-existing condition to blame for your injuries;
- insurers investigating you through social media outlets (such as Facebook, Twitter, etc.);
- the insurance company twisting your words around in their favor; and
- anything else they can use against you in order to deny your claim for benefits.
Because of the potential to run into these types of problems, you would benefit in seeking help from a Richmond, Virginia, attorney. They understand the ways your employer or their insurance carrier may try to work against you.
Contact a Richmond, Virginia, Attorney about Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
When you have difficulties with your Workers’ Compensation claim, a Richmond, Virginia, attorney can bear some of the burden you’ve been placed under. To get back on your feet, whether it means getting back to work or getting the benefits you deserve, order a copy of our free book, the Ultimate Guide to Workers’ Compensation in Virginia, and contact a Workers’ Comp attorney at the Injured Workers Law Firm for a no-cost consultation – 1-877-755-7744 or 1-804-755-7755.