When you go to work, you should be able to expect that you will be provided with a safe and healthy working environment that is in compliance with all relevant federal and state laws for your industry. However, nearly 3 million people sustain injuries or illnesses related to their job on an annual basis in the United States. Whether you need medical attention after a sudden accident or because you have a work-related condition that developed over time, the law in Georgia sets out important rights for you as an employee.
The law requires most employers to purchase workers’ compensation insurance policies, which are meant to cover the costs of treating a workplace injury or illness. Such coverage can include all of your necessary medical expenses, partial replacement of wages you lose if your recovery requires you to miss work, and even some disability benefits if you cannot work for an extended period of time. For families who tragically lose a loved one in a workplace accident, workers’ compensation policies should provide adequate death benefits.
While the workers’ compensation system is in place to protect employees, it does not change the fact that company owners care about profits and losses. All too often, an employer may complicate the workers’ compensation claim process to try to avoid liability and possible premium increases. In this situation, critical benefits may be significantly delayed or denied altogether.
The good news is that there is a way to simplify the workers’ compensation process so that you can focus on your treatment and recovery while maximizing your chances of receiving the full amount of benefits you deserve. When you call a highly experienced Columbus workers’ compensation attorney at Hasner Law, you can trust that we will skillfully handle all aspects of your claim to ensure you can obtain the coverage you need for your treatment. Please contact our workers’ compensation lawyers today to learn more about how we can help in your situation.
Common Reasons for Workers’ Compensation Claims
People can be injured in many different ways at work. While some industries, such as the construction industry, are far more dangerous than others, it is possible for employees to sustain injuries in almost any type of work atmosphere—even in a seemingly safe office building.
The following are some examples of accidents that can result in serious workplace injuries:
- Falls from heights such as scaffolding, ladders, cranes, and more
- Slip and falls on level flooring due to spills or other floor hazards
- Getting struck by falling tools or materials
- Accidents involving heavy machinery
- Power tool accidents
- Injuries caused by blasting or explosions
- Defective equipment that causes accidents
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Assaults by other co-workers
- Burns from hot liquids or steam
- Animal attacks, such as those against agricultural workers, mail carriers, or zoological workers
In addition to the above traumatic accidents, there are other types of conditions that can develop due to working conditions. Some of these include the following:
- Stress injuries from typing or other repetitive motions
- Respiratory problems due to inhalation of chemicals, dust, or smoke
- Vision or hearing loss due to exposure to bright lights or loud noises
- Skin disorders from exposure to chemicals
- Heat stroke, frostbite, or other conditions related to the elements
- Mesothelioma or other cancers from exposure to asbestos
- Stress-induced medical conditions, including panic attacks or heart attacks
Whether an injury was sudden or happened over time, you still deserve to receive proper benefits for your medical treatment for any work-related conditions. Some claims are more difficult to pursue than others, so you should always have a skilled lawyer on your side from the very beginning of the workers’ compensation process.
Workers’ Compensation Claims Can Be Denied
Too many people sustain injuries on the job, only to learn that their valid claim was either partially or completely denied.
Employers and their insurance companies can come up with many reasons to deny a claim, and they may not be concerned with how devastating this denial could be for you and your family. Some reasons why your claim may be denied include:
You made an error on the claim – Workers’ compensation claims have specific procedures, time limits, and requirements. It is all too easy to make a mistake, miss an important deadline, or fail to provide all supporting documents, each of which can result in a denial or at least a substantial delay. Our attorneys are thoroughly familiar with workers’ compensation claim procedures and can ensure your claim has the best chance at approval as possible.
Your employer questions the treatments needed for your injury – Only treatments that are needed for your workplace injuries will be covered by workers’ compensation benefits. If a question arises regarding whether a certain treatment is actually necessary or whether a lower-cost treatment option is available, your benefits may be limited.
Your employer denies that you had to miss work – Similarly to medical treatments, workers’ compensation will only cover lost wages if it was necessary for you to miss work because of your injuries. If your employer believes you are missing work by choice and not out of necessity, you may find that your wage replacement benefits are denied.
Your employer claims that your injury was not work-related – Only injuries or illnesses that occurred on the job will be compensated by benefits. In some cases, the insurance company may suspect that your injury happened during recreational activities or at home and, therefore, is not compensable. Insurers and employers can also argue that you were acting outside the scope of your job duties when the injury happened and may then deny your claim.
At Hasner Law, we know how to handle a wide variety of situations involving claim denials or delays. We know that a denial is not always the final answer in your workers’ compensation case and we can help you file a successful appeal if you have already been denied. However, if you call us from the beginning of the claim process, there is often a greater chance of avoiding a denial altogether because we know how to put together a claim that clearly demonstrates your rights to benefits.
Contact Our Columbus Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for More Information
If you’ve been injured on the job in or around the Columbus, GA area, you should never hesitate to discuss your rights with a skilled workers’ compensation lawyer at Hasner Law. Whether you want help filing an initial claim or would like us to review a denial that you have received, we will evaluate your case and advise you of your options for free. Please contact us online or call our office today at 1-855-888-4878 (8478).