Being injured while performing your job can be a nightmare. However, for many, it is a reality. We have all heard the terrifying stories regarding workers compensation. Navigating the waters in a workers compensation suit can be disenchanting and disappointing. Workers compensation laws can entitle you to compensation, such as medical care, rehabilitation, and indemnity wage benefits. Filing a workers compensation claim may be nerve-wracking, but being denied can be even worse. Below are three things you should do if your workers compensation is denied.
Hire a Lawyer Immediately
If you have been injured on the job, it is important to immediately start looking into obtaining legal counsel. Whether your claim is disputed or not, talking to a lawyer quickly can save you time and money in the end. Employers often keep lawyers on retainer. They are well versed in the laws regarding workers compensation. Their sole job is to protect the interest of the company when it comes to a workers compensation claim. Because of this, you should seek your own workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible. However, if you did not immediately seek counsel and your claim was denied, it is not too late.
Disputed Claim for Compensation
If your workers’ compensation is denied, one of the options you have is to file a Disputed Claim for Compensation form. As an administrative law in the state of Louisiana, this form initiates a dispute claim. Depending on the case, evidence and appeal process, a dispute will take six (or more) months to resolve. If you did not have a lawyer before, it is highly advised you hire a workers compensation attorney if you are filing this form.
While you await the resolution of your workers’ compensation dispute claim, your bills will not subside. A lawyer can give you tailored advice regarding using your paid time off (PTO) or leave. However, it is generally suggested that you contact the nearest social services department. You may qualify for benefits, such as food stamps or disability, that will help you get by with essentials while awaiting the final legal ruling. It is illegal in the state of Louisiana for your employer to fire you for filing a workers compensation claim. However, they are not required to keep a job open for you awaiting your return. If you will be unable to return to work based on the injuries you have received, it is advised that you find a new place of employment pending your recovery.