The main reason why you need hire an experienced and capable worker’s comp attorney in Sierra Madre is so that they can bridge the gap between your employer obtain compensation for your injury or loss. There are different kinds of injuries and incidents that may be sustained at your workplace and the following is just an example. Disability, slips and falls, work vehicle accidents and even wrongful death. All these are issues that can find the justice they deserve.
The Best Workmans Comp Lawyer in California
Before you retain an experienced compensation attorney in California to help you, it is important for you to consider some factors. You need to consider the extent of your injury and ask yourself whether there is need for compensation. Severe injuries will stand a much better ground with this regard. Minor issues may not be enough cause to lay these kinds of claims.
Before you proceed with a case, it is vital that you sort out the percentage fee that your workers compensation attorney is going to get. Once you are clear, you can proceed. There are many conflicts that present themselves with lawyers. Different states will have a certain percentage that lawyers are entitled to.
The Advantages of Working With a Workers Compensation Lawyer
Every day, all over the UK people are injured in work related accidents. According to the Health and Safety Executive, in 2008 180 workers were killed at work, a rate of 0.6 per 100,000 workers. 131,895 other injuries to employees were reported by RIDDOR: Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations, with the Labour Force Survey announcing 246,000 reportable injuries.
The HSE report identified that the most commonly occurring accidents are musculoskeletal disorders (mainly bad backs and damage to upper limbs and the neck) and stress. Stress alone accounted for 57% of total working days lost.
As well as accidents many people have suffered from the consequences of long term industrial illnesses such as vibration white finger, mesothelioma (2156 people died of mesothelioma in 2007), asbestosis, pneumoconiosis and silicosis, repetitive strain injury, hearing and eyesight problems. The report suggested that thousands more died from other occupational cancers and lung diseases.
Public administration, transport and health and safety work recorded the largest proportions of workplace illness whilst agriculture, transport and construction were shown to have the greatest number of accidents.
In 2008/09, a total of 329 offences (breaches) were heard, resulting in 309 convictions, a rate of 94%. Organisations found guilty of health and safety breaches received fines totalling £1.73 million, giving average penalties on conviction of £5,607 per breach, which relates to £12 466 per case.
In addition to fines levied for safety breaches, an estimated £10 billion a year is being paid out in compensation. If you have suffered a work related accident or injury through no fault of your own, you may well be entitled to claim compensation. There are no set figures for workplace claims as no two cases are the same. The amount you may be entitled to will of course relate to the nature of accident and its impact on your life and livelihood.
The guidelines in place split the compensation into two amounts. The first, called General Damages takes into account your pain, the suffering you have endured (or are enduring) and what's called the loss of amenity. Perhaps you have lost hearing or the vision from an eye. The amount of General Damages that you are entitled to essentially boils down to three essential factors:
The severity of your injuries.
How much your injuries have prevented you from carrying out your normal activities.
Ongoing pain and suffering.
The second part of the compensation equation is called Special Damages. This relates to:
Lost earnings. The cost of private medical treatment.
Travel and prescription expenses.
Any other relevant expenses.
By way of compensation guidelines and examples, you could expect the following levels of compensation award:
£1500 - £7000 for a minor head injury. £155,000 - £255,000 for brain damage. £8,000 to £15,000 for a permanently damaged shoulder. Up to £6,000 for a minor ankle injury. £35,000 for a severely damaged ankle. £110,000 or more for mesothelioma.
It's vital to take expert advice from a specialist work injury claims solicitor. Your solicitor will help prepare the case to support your claim for general and special damages and work to ensure that you are properly compensated.
How to Properly Choose a Workers Compensation Attorney
If you are hurt on the job, your employer's insurance company may offer you a lump sum settlement. The insurance company is not required to do so but they may and then you must ask yourself whether you should take it or fight for more at trial. There are many factors, even above and beyond the actual amount, that go into answering that question. Before you accept a settlement from an insurance company, you should talk with an experienced attorney about the facts of your case and the best course of action for you.
Settlement offer amount- The amount isn't the only factor to consider in deciding whether to accept a settlement or go to trial, but it is extremely important. An experienced attorney can tell you if the amount offered is in the ballpark of fair and reasonable. Some of the things he will consider are whether the amount compensates you for the permanent nature of your injuries, whether it covers disputed medical bills or other medical costs and whether it compensates you for future lost wages, among other things. Also, you and your attorney will devise a game plan of perhaps a first negotiation for a higher amount and, if that fails, to proceed to trial.
Timing of receipt of settlement amount as opposed to trial - Even if there is a very good chance that you could win a higher amount at trial, settling now for a lesser amount might actually be the wiser decision for you, depending on your circumstances. Do you desperately need the money and can't wait for a trial? Has the whole ordeal been hard on your health and the stress of a trial could only make it worse?
Timing with respect to your health - It is extremely important to remember that you should never settle your case until you are at the healthiest you can be and don't currently need more treatment for your injury. You do not want to be in a situation where you settle only to learn that you need more treatment. You can't then go back to the insurance company. Once you settle, it's over. Illinois work injury attorneys know this standard for waiting until your treatment is complete. If it seems your attorney is not considering this but is making a decision based on what will get him paid quicker, find a new lawyer.
Chance of success at trial -Your attorney will consider your case and whether the disputed issues are likely to be resolved in your favor. What kind of evidence do you have? If it is solid, why not show it at trial? If it's not, is a trial too risky? Settlements are a guaranteed amount and closure to your situation. You can't appeal a settlement after you accept and receive the money. On the hand, a trial is risky - you could get a much higher amount or you could not. Your attorney should clearly explain to you his assessment of your chances at trial and a risk/reward analysis.
Future medical rights - As noted above, when you settle, there is no appeal. You sign a contract that has consequences your attorney should explain to you, such as the forfeit of all future medical rights for treatment related to your injury. This means that if your injury unexpectedly gets worse next year and you need major surgery, workers' compensation will not cover it. You signed a settlement and it's over. A new, different injury or accident in the future is a new unrelated matter but, as for your original injury, you won't be compensated if you need further treatment.
If, however, you go to trial and win, your future medical rights relating to your injury never cease. This means that if your injury unexpectedly gets worse next year or ten years later and you need major surgery, the insurance company will have to pay for it. So, you may not get a lump sum settlement but rather payment over time. Only you and your attorney know what the best option is for you.
Whether to settle or go to trial is not a simple decision but one that you and your experienced attorney must carefully assess to make sure you devise a strategy that best serves you.