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What is Workers' Compensation Law?
Injured at work? Not sure if you should sure your employer? How much does an attorney cost? How will I pay for medical bills? After suffering a serious injury at work, most people are unsure about what do to. Making sure you are helped with medical bills, ensuring job security, and returning you to peak health are on your mind. You can’t do it alone. It’s an important decision to decide who to help you through this process. Because of this, we think that almost everyone needs a workers’ compensation lawyer they can trust, but a lot of people don’t know what we do or how we can help.
Workers’ Compensation Law Explained
Workers’ compensation law is a form of insurance that provides wage replacement and medical benefits to employees injured in the course of employment in exchange for mandatory relinquishment of the employee’s right to sue his or her employer for the tort of negligence.
What types of injuries are covered under Minnesota workers’ compensation laws?
Minnesota workers’ compensation covers the obvious specific injuries that everybody knows when it happens to them. For example, specific injuries of all different types, including orthopedic injuries, chemical exposures, occupational illnesses from any toxins or exposure, and mental health injures including post-traumatic stress disorder are all covered.
What is less known is that repetitive stress injuries called Gillette injuries, just like the razor, are covered as well, and they’ve been covered here in Minnesota for years. Gillette injuries are basically the kind of injury that occurs when you have gradual, heavy work activities to a specific body part that wears a joint out and causes disability or need for medical care and treatment.
Just because you can’t see, feel, touch, and smell those types of injuries, they’re a little more subtle so they will typically send a report of injury to the insurance company, which will deny the claim. And then an injured worker has to go out and prove that claim up through medical evidence, opinions from doctors, and that’s where lawyers come in to help obtain those opinions and establish those claims.
How much attorneys cost
Attorneys are always paid on a contingent fee basis meaning they’re not paid unless they make a recovery on your behalf. And typically, all attorneys in workers compensation have the same retainer agreement if your injury occurred after October 1, 2014. That fee is a straight 20 percent of the first $130,000 collected for you up to a maximum fee of $26,000. If the dispute involves medical issues or vocational issues, like getting you retrained, the insurance company pays the attorney not you directly. There is no exchange of cash between an injured worker and an attorney, it’s all through the insurance company, and all fees have to be approved by a compensation judge.
What benefits are available?
Workers compensation is very limited in terms of the type of benefits it provides. And the reason that the benefits are limited, as opposed to a personal injury claim, is because workers compensation has a limited scope of coverage. The reason for that is that it is a no fault system. You cannot sue your employer for fault. You cannot go in front of a jury and ask a jury of your peers to provide you with fair and reasonable compensation for all of your injuries.
Instead, you go in front of a workers compensation judge and ask for wage loss. If you have a permanent injury, you are entitled to permanent disability benefits. However, they’re very limited in scope, and they don’t fully compensate an injured worker. Thus, you need an expert attorney to guide you through the process.
How Do I Find the Best Workers’ Compensation Attorneys In Minneapolis?
Because they deal with a very difficult time of a person’s life, choosing a workers’ compensation lawyer is often one of the most important decisions a person can make. Figuring out who to choose, then, is a hard decision.
When choosing a workers’ compensation lawyer, start by finding a professional who has a good reputation among other lawyers and the justice system within the workers’ comp legal community. Well established lawyers are great places to find someone who has years of experience with the law as well as good relationships with the court and local community. It’s also important to ask about a lawyer’s experience with cases that are similar to yours. Remember that every case is different.
If you’re looking for legal consulting for you or a loved one who has suffered an injury at work, ReelLawyers posts thousands of videos offering advice on issues like common workers comp questions, available benefits, statute of limitations, attorney’s fees, construction accidents, employment issues, asbestosis workers compensation, mesothelioma workers compensation, and cancer acquire from a job injury.