You might think that the odds of being injured in a workplace accident are small, but according to the National Safety Council, a worker is injured while on the job every seven seconds of every day. This translates to 12,600 injured every day, which means that 4.6 million workers are injured every year in the United States. Worker’s compensation is put in place to ensure that certain benefits will be paid when a person is injured while on the job, regardless of who is at fault. These benefits should cover medical expenses, time lost, job retraining and other temporary disability benefits. An experienced worker’s compensation attorney can help ensure that these benefits are paid to the injured worker in a timely fashion.
If you become ill, or are injured while on the job, you and your family will likely face a loss of income, medical bills and the resulting pain and suffering from your work-related accident. While you know your job is important, you shouldn’t have to risk your safety and well-being just for the sake of your job. The intent of worker’s comp insurance is to provide you with a financial safety net while you experience a work-related injury.
If you have suffered a workplace injury or illness, an experienced worker’s compensation attorney from Caldwell Law Group can review your case, answer any questions you may have. We will help you acquire the benefits you deserve.
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Concerning your worker’s compensation claim
A brief explanation of worker’s compensation benefits
In Idaho, any business with one or more employees is required to carry worker’s compensation insurance. Worker’s comp benefits are intended to cover injuries from a specific workplace accident or any illness that may develop over time. This requirement extends to both full-time and part-time employees. This applies even if the employees are seasonal, or occasional. In some circumstances, even private contractors must be covered by your worker’s compensation insurance policy. These are determined on a case-by-case basis by the Idaho Industrial Commission’s Employer Compliance Department.
Some exemptions to worker’s compensation requirements in Idaho include:
- Sole proprietors are exempt, but may choose to cover themselves.
- Household and domestic workers.
- Sole proprietors who employ family members living in their household. Family members living outside the household may apply for an exemption.
- Partners of a limited liability company (LLC).
- Pilots of agricultural spraying or dusting planes.
- Real estate salespeople who are paid exclusively by commissions.
- Corporate officers who own at least 10% of the company’s stock, who are also directors.
- Athletic officials for grades 7-12.
- Irregular, or casual employees who’s employment is unrelated to the employer’s normal business operations.
Outside of these exemptions, worker’s compensation insurance is in place to provide an injured worker the ability to pay their medical expenses and other bills incurred during the recovery period. These benefits also include payments for lost wages, disability benefits and other costs associated with rehabilitation and job retraining.
Legal options with a worker’s comp attorney
If you have been injured while in the scope of your duties for your place of employment, you are entitled to worker’s compensation benefits. Since this system is in place, you might assume that you don’t need a worker’s compensation attorney.
Unfortunately, worker’s comp benefits are typically paid-out by an insurance company that may not always want to pay the full benefit amount. Obviously, this shrinks their profit margins, which could make their shareholders less money. Sometimes there are situations surrounding the workplace accident that may be unclear. There is also the possibility that they make accusations that the injury occurred outside of the scope of work, or that it was caused by a pre-existing condition. In these circumstances, an experienced worker’s compensation attorney will help protect your rights and work to get you the compensation you’re entitled to.
A major component of the worker’s compensation system is to help shield employers from civil liability claims. If your injury was potentially caused by a third party, (for instance, due to a faulty piece of equipment), you may be entitled to pursue a civil claim against the equipment manufacturer. Civil claims may produce a larger settlement, because you are able to pursue noneconomic and economic damages. An experienced worker’s compensation attorney can help you determine your legal standing in these types of cases.
Reasons to hire a worker’s compensation attorney
If your claim is being denied outright by your employer or the insurance company, or you are not receiving your benefits in a timely manner, you may need the help of an experienced personal injury attorney. Sadly, many people have their claims rejected and they never even try to appeal the decision. A lot of employers and their insurance companies count on this, as there are numerous cases that never receive a proper legal challenge. This saves them a lot of money in the long-run, even though it is highly unethical.
If you feel you’ve been the subject of retaliation from your employer because of a worker’s comp claim, you might want to hire a lawyer to represent you. The retaliation could come in a number of forms, like: having your hours cut, reducing your pay, receiving a demotion or your employer may have even fired you outright. If your employer has done any of these things, or if you feel your employer has discriminated against you in any way for filing a worker’s compensation claim, you should speak with a lawyer immediately.
If you, or a loved one were injured on the job, you might need the help of an experienced worker’s compensation attorney in the Boise, Idaho area. At Caldwell Law Group, PLLC, we handle workers comp claims in both Idaho and Washington. We offer a free initial consultation, so there is never a need to worry about money up front. While the worker’s compensation system was intended to protect injured employees, like yourself or your loved one, the system can sometimes work exclusively for the benefit of employers and the insurance companies. Don’t try to fight their teams of highly-paid lawyers on your own. Give us a call today to schedule a free consultation.
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