Workers should not delay hiring a work accident lawyer to pursue their claims for many reasons. These include the statute of limitations expiring, the difficulty in gathering “stale” evidence, and the risk of signing away rights. Also, deadlines in filing claim notices, claim filing, claim appeals, etc, are extremely short and must be watched closely. Hiring an attorney can help clients protect their rights and prevail in their claims.
Advantages of an Attorney
Attorneys receive a contingency fee that is paid from the disability award. The sooner an attorney is hired, the bigger the bang for the buck the claimant receives. Most attorneys offer a free consultation for workers’ compensation claims. No-cost consultations enable claimants to conduct research and find an attorney who will best represent their claim.
Additionally, hiring a work accident lawyer early on makes it easier for plaintiffs to take proactive measures to protect themselves and establish the validity of the claim. The attorney guides the claimant through the early stages of the process. This helps with the preservation of rights and the collection of evidence.
The attorney can also recommend physicians and rehabilitation treatment facilities that can help the individual heal and recover from the injuries. This is crucial as many insurance providers will attempt to route individuals to lower cost, lower quality treatment options. An attorney can help protect the individual’s rights to pursue treatment from a physician and facility of their choice.
Finally, the statute of limitations on the claim can expire if the injured worker waits too long to file the claim. If the claimant attempts to file after the statute expires, the courts can dismiss the claim.
When An Attorney is Advisable
Injured workers should never attempt to pursue their claims without legal representation. This is especially true when the claim involves a requirement for surgery or long-term care. Similarly, an attorney can help when injuries are considered moderate to severe, or if the physician believes the injury is the result of a pre-existing condition or not work-related.
An attorney is also advisable if the individual will not be able to return to work, when benefits are denied, or when the employer is disputing the decision delivered by the state workers’ compensation division. An attorney can help claimants address these challenges and develop effective solutions to recover compensation.