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Although filing a claim with the workers’ compensation system seems straightforward, they can quickly become complicated. Navigating this system can be challenging, especially when your employer and insurance company want to pay out as little as possible for your injuries. A Cary workers’ compensation lawyer can be critical to your ability to initiate and maintain a valid workers’ compensation claim.

As a worker who has been injured on the job, you are entitled to benefits that can pay your medical bills and provide you with partial wages until you are ready to return to work. Developing occupational diseases or illnesses can also lead to a workers’ compensation claim. Regardless of the circumstances that led to your injury or illness, you may want to schedule a consultation for advice and guidance.

The Mechanics of Filing a Workers’ Comp Claim

The first step that employees should take when they suffer a job-related injury or illness is to report the incident promptly to their employer in writing. This step also typically includes providing a written account of the circumstances that led to the injury or illness. The employer should then submit the claim to its workers’ compensation carrier and the North Carolina Industrial Commission.

If the employer does not accept or report the injury or illness that workers provide, these workers can still file a claim with the Industrial Commission on their own. However, they must file their claims within two years of the date of the incident that led to their injuries. Otherwise, they may lose the ability to pursue a workers’ compensation claim.

Filing a workers’ compensation claim is also important because it is the sole remedy that employees have against their employers for relief related to a work-related injury or illness. Since the workers’ compensation program exists, injured workers generally cannot file regular personal injury claims against their employers. As a workers’ compensation lawyer in Cary can advise, this prohibition exists even in situations where the negligence of the employer led to the accident, injuries, or illness.

Receiving Medical Treatment in a Workers’ Compensation Case

Receiving medical treatment following a work-related injury or illness is not as easy as going to a regular doctor or local hospital for treatment. Instead, the workers’ compensation insurance carrier typically has the authority to direct medical care for injured or ill workers. The insurance company can send workers to any doctor or facility that they find appropriate.

Likewise, insurance carriers can approve or disapprove of a specific medical treatment, even if a doctor has recommended it. However, workers can request a change in treatment, a second opinion, or a provider of their choice during the workers’ compensation process. A workers’ compensation attorney in Cary may be able to help workers pursue these options when available.

Settling a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Cary

Settling a workers’ compensation claim can consist of periodic partial wage replacement, coverage of all medical expenses related to the illness or injury, and a lump sum for permanent impairment, whether partial or total. Appropriate settlements should provide provisions for future medical treatment and wage losses due to a permanent inability to return to work, if applicable.

In some cases, employees may also be able to return to work but still may need ongoing medical treatment, which is also a consideration in any settlement. This coverage may not be automatic, so injured or ill workers may want to make this a part of their settlement, even if they have only a possibility of future complications stemming from their injuries.

Call on a Cary Workers’ Compensation Attorney for Advice

When you are in crisis due to a severe work-related injury or illness, you are likely to be concerned about your physical and mental health first. However, worries about paying medical bills and supporting your family likely will dominate your thoughts as your condition stabilizes. A Cary workers’ compensation lawyer can help handle the many issues that may arise from filing a claim the workers’ compensation program.

While you focus on your well being, legal counsel can focus on getting the benefits that can be crucial support for you and your family during this challenging time. Together, you can launch a successful workers’ compensation claim and work toward the best recovery possible.