Being injured on the job often means you may be eligible to receive workers' compensation payments to help cover your medical expenses.
Normally, this is an internal process involving you and your employer’s insurance carrier. Even so, the workers’ comp system can be fairly complex and difficult to navigate at times. If you run into problems with your claim, here are four good reasons why you could benefit by turning to a workers’ compensation attorney in Orange County.
1. Advice on Compensation Options
It’s fairly obvious you may have a valid workers’ comp claim if you fall at work or get hit by flying debris or a falling object. But you may be wondering if you can file a claim if you develop severe lower back pain because your employer failed to provide proper equipment to help with heavy lifting. This is when a consultation with a workers’ compensation attorney in Orange County may be beneficial. A lawyer can go over your situation to give you a better idea of whether or not you may have a valid claim.
2. Help with the Filing Process
All it takes is one significant error or the missing of important filing dates for a workers’ comp claim to be rejected. A workers’ compensation attorney in Orange County can project your interests and ensure you have everything required to file a proper claim. This includes making sure applicable state regulations are followed. In California, for example, workers must report the injury to their employer within 30 days of occurrence.
3. A Legal Hand with Appeals
There are times when a workers’ comp claim may be denied, or a carrier may change a claim’s compensation or status. If this happens to you, a workers’ compensation attorney in Orange County can help you file an appeal, which is termed a Request for Hearing. A lawyer can also find out why a claim was denied and determine if there is a way to resolve the issue within a timely manner. Common reasons for denials include:
- The injury was reported too late
- There’s a lack of sufficient medical evidence
- The injury is deemed not to be work-related
4. Assistance with the Pre-Trial/Hearing Process
If a carrier is refusing to pay for your injury-related medical expenses, you have a legal right to request a hearing. In California, this process starts with a pre-trial conference. During this stage, a lawyer can act on your behalf in an attempt to have the claim accepted by the insurance company. Your attorney along with the insurance provider will also be able to choose the medical examiner. Most cases are resolved without the need for a hearing. However, there are times when it may be necessary to continue to the hearing stage with your lawyer.
A workers’ compensation attorney in Orange County can also let you know if you may be eligible for related benefits due to your work-related injury. Depending on your situations, additional options might include long-term disability benefits or Social Security benefits you may be entitled to receive due to the nature of your injuries or condition.