When should you contact a workers compensation attorney?
Injuries that occur at work require the knowledge and experience of a Denver workers compensation attorney that practices in this area. The insurance carriers have adjusters and attorneys that are trained in this area, so we believe the injured worker should have someone representing them with the experience in dealing with employers and insurers. The rules of workers’ compensation change yearly. The insurance company will take advantage of these changes and may not be providing all of the benefits an injured worker deserves. An adjuster may be very friendly and it may appear that the claim is being handled fairly, when in reality there are benefits that have not been paid or are being underpaid.
Unless you have been involved in these cases, as a professional there is no way to know if the friendly adjuster has failed to mention that you should have been paid at a higher rate or should have been compensated for items that the statutes allow. We want to help injured workers. We have a great deal of experience handling back, neck, and head injuries, but we look at each case individually to see if we can help, no matter what part of the body is injured.
Insurance carriers have complained that the cases involving attorneys are more costly to them than cases without attorneys. There is a good explanation for this. We know what you’re suppose to receive according to the Workers’ Compensation Statutes and we fight to make sure they do what they are required by law to do. Without a Denver workers compensation attorney, they have no one looking over their shoulder to make sure things are done right.
Work Related Injuries & Illnesses
Anyone who is considered to work under the Workers’ Compensation Act may claim benefits. The injury/illness may occur on or off the employer’s premises and the employee needn’t be full-time to claim benefits.
Compensation is payable if you have suffered a work-related injury/illness, including psychological injury; if you have suffered from a disease that was caused or aggravated by your work conditions. Benefits are also payable for injuries sustained on a normal journey to or from work if there is a clear and substantial connection to your employment, providing you did not expose yourself to any abnormal risk of injury.
The following steps may be taken to ensure the appropriate and expedited handling of your claim:
- Immediately report your injury/illness, regardless of nature or severity. Request an “Employee’s Claim for Workers’ Compensation Benefits” form from your supervisor.
- Accurately complete the “Employee” section of the form and return it to your supervisor immediately. Ensure that all body parts which were injured in the accident are explicitly detailed in your report.
- Keep a copy of the completed form for your own records. Request that your supervisor returns this form to you, with the “Employer” section completed, within 24 hours, in order to be compliant with the law.
- Advise your supervisor if you need medical care and see your primary care physician immediately. If you never completed a ‘Personal Physician Pre-Designation Form’ prior to your injury then request that your employer send you to a physician as soon as possible. According to state law treatment must be provided to victim within 24 hours of filing the claim.
- Accurately describe how your work related injury/illness occurred to the treating physician. Include specific body parts and the type of pain afflicting them.
- Attend every medical appointment, on time. Keep all medical documents and notes that your treating physician gives to you.
- Keep all documents you receive from your employer or the insurance carrier regarding your injury/illness. Keep meticulous records of the following:
- Missed Work Days/Time
- Dates and Names of Doctors Regarding all Medical Treatment
- All round-trip mileage for medical treatment and legal appointments
- Receipts for any out-of-pocket expenses (prescriptions, therapy etc.)
- Document all the details surrounding any injury/illness you suffer from at work.
- Review the facts surrounding your incident with an attorney who specializes in Workers’ Compensation, as soon as possible. There are laws which dictate how long after an injury/illness occurs that a victim may seek legal recourse.
- Do not abuse the Workers’ Compensation system; if you have an injury/illness that is unrelated to your work do not report it as a work-related injury/illness. All statements and facts that you provide must be true, to your knowledge. Filing a fraudulent Workers’ Compensation claim is a felony under Colorado law.