|If you are hurt at work, you likely have a claim under the workers' compensation laws. There are certain limited exceptions. But in general, anyone hurt at work can recover medical benefits for reasonable and necessary medical treatment for a work injury as well as certain related expenses. Additionally, one can recover what is called an indemnity claim, that is, loss of earnings due to the work injury. These benefits are based on an injured employee's average weekly wage which may be subject to a minimum and maximum amount as well as total or partial disability factors. Additionally there are specific loss benefits for loss of certain body parts or disfigurements of the head, face or neck. Additionally there are benefits for occupational diseases as well as death benefits.
TIME LIMITS. There are many time limits that can apply in a workers' compensation case so you do need to act promptly. In general, unless the employer knows of the work injury, the employer must be given notice within 120 days of the injury. If the employer does not receive notice within 120 days after the injury, workers' compensation is not due until the notice is given. There are certain abilities to extend the time limits, there are, however, certain statutes of limitations. One needs to file a Claim Petition with the workers' compensation bureau within three years after the date of the injury if benefits have not been paid or accepted.
In general, the workers' compensation laws preclude you from suing your employer or even one of your fellow workers for the injury. You may, however, be able to have two claims, that is your workers' compensation claim for your injury at work, but also a claim against an independent contractor or some non-employee driver in an automobile accident caused by a negligent driver. There may be, however, a subrogation claim asserted by the workers' compensation carrier lien on those third party actions.
The employer may require you to complete certain things to obtain certain medical records and go to certain doctors. You are not required to continue to treat with a medical doctor supplied by your employer indefinitely.
If you have been injured at work, please give us a call and we would be happy to assist you and on most cases we will handle it on a 20% contingency fee arrangement.