Greenville Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Sustaining a work-related injury or illness can be difficult and stressful for you and your family. Coping with a severe injury is challenging in itself. You shouldn’t have to worry about how you’ll continue to support your family while also juggling forms, attending appointments, and dealing with insurers. We want you to focus on your health and recovery while our attorneys take care of the rest.
Our Greenville workers’ compensation lawyers are here to lift the weight of the workers’ compensation process from your shoulders. We support you and your family every step of the way while filing your forms, gathering evidence, and fighting for your benefits. Above all, we aim to provide the care, compassion, and guidance you need to support your physical, emotional, and financial recovery.
Simply put, we take the hassle out of filing for workers’ compensation. We will answer your questions about the law and how it applies to your situation while managing every aspect of your case. Call (919) 785-5000 for a free consultation. We provide comprehensive case reviews for prospective clients and listening ears for injured people in our community.
Workers’ Compensation Claims Do Not Always Go as Smoothly as Planned
If you or a loved one suffered any work-related injury, you could be entitled to medical care and a percentage of your lost wages. As such, workers’ compensation in North Carolina is a vital lifeline for thousands of employees who sustain common injuries such as:
- Back injuries
- Head trauma
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Occupational illness and disease
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Loss of limbs
- Damaged internal organs
You May Encounter Legal Hurdles if You File on Your Own
Unfortunately, claiming benefits is not always as easy as it should be. Workers’ compensation law is complex, and issues can arise along the way, which, if unchallenged, could result in an undervalued, delayed, or unfairly denied claim. Common examples include:
- Employers who devalue claims by minimizing injuries
- Denied claims
- Employers who delay or fail to follow up on a claim
- Employee fear or hesitation to file a claim
As your personal advocate, we will look out for your best interests from start to finish. With almost five decades of experience handling workers’ compensation cases, we understand how a debilitating injury or illness affects you and your family. We will help you get through this difficult time.
We Help Severely Injured People Navigate the Workers’ Compensation System
If you are worried about claiming or how to apply for benefits, we will stand with you, providing effective counsel, delivered with genuine compassion and care. Further, if your claim was denied or your employer is making the process harder than it should be, don’t give up. Our Greenville workers’ compensation attorneys will guide you through the appeal process, fighting for your entitlement to benefits as we would for our own families.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Workers’ Compensation Cases
Of course, your priority after being injured is tending to your health. You will need to visit a doctor pre-approved by your employer. After seeking medical care, however, we can help you undertake a few essential tasks to keep the claims process speedy, informal, and fair.
To begin, let’s answer some of the most common questions we get about workers’ compensation claims:
How Do I Claim Workers’ Compensation in Greenville, North Carolina?
Most employers are legally required to carry insurance that pays benefits to qualifying employees if they are injured or get sick at work. However, you won’t obtain benefits if your application isn’t accurate and filed on time. The first deadline is notifying your employer in writing within 30 days of your injury or the onset of illness.
Next, you must complete the necessary forms and file them with the North Carolina Industrial Commission (NCIC). Keep copies and provide one for your employer or insurer. You have two years to file this form, but the longer you leave it, the less likely the insurance will be to pay. As such, we recommend filing as soon as possible.
Then, you will need to wait for your employer to respond to your claim, which should be within 30 days. At this stage, your employer can agree to pay your benefits or deny your request. Many claims are denied due to lack of medical evidence, incomplete or inaccurate paperwork, failure to notify in time, or disputes about the incident. For example, they may claim you were injured outside of work.
Our team can handle all aspects of your workers’ compensation claim.
What Does Workers’ Compensation Cover in 2023?
Workers’ compensation benefits cover your medical care and up to two-thirds of your wages. Per the NCIC, the current maximum weekly rate for claims filed after 1st January 2023 is $1,254.00.
Not all injuries automatically qualify, so it can be a struggle with insurance companies to get the benefits you deserve.
Workers’ compensation benefits may cover several other losses your employer won’t tell you about. For example:
- If you have to travel farther than 20 miles for medical treatment, you are entitled to mileage compensation.
- If you are out of work for more than 30 consecutive days, you can recover your lost earnings for those first 7 days.
Our team knows which claims to look for to ensure we get you all the benefits you deserve.
Can I Sue My Employer for a Workplace Injury or Illness?
You cannot sue your employer if you are collecting workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to help the employee and the employer. In receiving benefits through this system, you give up your rights to sue. However, if a third party caused your injuries, you may be able to recover compensation through both a personal injury lawsuit and a workers’ compensation claim.
For example, let’s assume you drive for work and are hit by a negligent driver. In that case, you could claim workers’ compensation and file a third-party lawsuit for damages such as your physical pain and suffering.
Can I Be Fired for Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
You cannot be fired for claiming workers’ compensation in North Carolina. It is illegal for an employer to retaliate against you in this way, nor can they retaliate in other ways. However, they could find other reasons to terminate your contract as North Carolina is an at-will state. For example, if your injuries limit your ability to perform essential job duties, that could be a reason for dismissal, but your employer must make reasonable accommodations for your situation.
When Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Workplace Injury?
Working with a workers’ compensation lawyer can be advantageous, as they help you obtain the benefits you are legally entitled to and overcome any obstacles along the way. For example, some workers’ compensation applicants are unaware of some of the benefits they are entitled to, such as back pay for the first week of their injury or illness.
Our team provides everything you need for your claim or appeal. We can help if:
- You sustained severe injuries and need help getting started with your case.
- You are unsure about how to find the evidence to substantiate your claim.
- You feel you were unfairly dismissed after being injured at work.
- Your claim was denied, and you need help with the appeals process.
- Your employer is disputing whether your injuries were caused at work.
- The insurance company denied, delayed, or refused to authorize your treatment.
- A third party caused your injury, and you want to file multiple claims.
- You feel your employer is mistreating you after a workplace injury.
As we mentioned earlier, workers’ compensation does not cover financial damages like pain and suffering, so it’s vital to recover the full workers’ comp benefits you are entitled to. That is why we are here—to guide you and your family through this difficult time, tending to your needs with wholehearted care. This way, you can focus on your recovery, knowing that your claim is in capable hands.
Proving Negligence in a Greenville Workplace Back Injury Case
Generally, all employers in North Carolina that employ three or more individuals must carry workers’ compensation insurance. Some domestic workers, farm workers, and federal government employees may be exempt from workers’ compensation laws.
If someone suffers a workplace injury, they must provide written notice to their employer within 30 days to be eligible for compensation, according to N.C.G.S. §97-22. Furthermore, under N.C.G.S. §97-28, any injured worker must wait at least seven days before receiving compensation. However, if a worker’s injury results in disability of more than 21 days, they are eligible to collect compensation starting from the date of their disability.
Additionally, under N.C.G.S. §97-24, individuals have a maximum of two years to claim workers’ compensation for their workplace injury. To ensure that this time limit does not run out, individuals may wish to seek the advice of a back injuries lawyer in Greenville as soon as possible if they are considering filing a workers’ compensation claim.
When Times Are Hard, The Whitley Family Stands With You
The Whitley Law Firm has been serving the hard-working people of Greenville in their personal injury cases since 1974. We understand your feelings and needs and channel that compassion into helping your case. Don’t suffer alone after being injured at work. Let us take care of you and fight for the benefits you deserve. We meet weekly to discuss workers’ compensation cases because we know just how fast things can change.
We provide our legal services on a contingency fee, so you only pay us after we recover your benefits. Start today by calling (919) 785-5000 for comprehensive legal advice with our team. It’s free, and we will provide clear, actionable advice that can give you a better idea of your legal options.