Injured workers often don’t know what the truth is about workers compensation
Most of us don’t know much about workers compensation until we are faced with a work injury. Then we rely upon a variety of sources – from employers to co-workers to the insurance company’s designees – to tell us what to do and how to get through our injuries and medical bills. It can be quite confusing to figure out what’s true and what’s not. In our experience, we’ve heard many injured workers’ misconceptions about workers compensation in Indiana. Here are some of those myths and the truth you need to know:
The settlement offer comes from a book.
Even though it’s true that workers comp settlements in Indiana are preset, the “book” contains a wide range of Permanent Partial Impairment (PPI) ratings, and insurance doctors oftentimes will choose a lower number that your case merits.
An attorney can’t do anything to help me.
While it’s true that not all injured workers need an attorney to help them file a workers compensation claim and be fully compensated, some people are better off hiring an attorney. You won’t know until you get a free consultation with one. At Klezmer Maudlin, we avoid taking cases unless we can add value to your case. The last thing we want is an unhappy client and a bad review.
The insurance company will treat me well and follow the law.
Workers compensation insurance companies are interested in expeditious and inexpensive settlements of workers comp claims. They are not motivated to treat you kindly, and they sometimes find ways to skirt the law in order to close cases quickly.
I can choose any doctor I want.
Indiana workers compensation law mandates that the insurance company chooses the doctor that injured workers see for treatment. That said, you may be able to get your own doctor if you can provide “good cause” or have a medical emergency.
I will get all the medical treatment that I need.
The doctors and nurse case managers that are hired by insurance companies are trying to save the insurance companies money and close cases quickly. Unfortunately, this means that they may sometimes try to limit the medical care you need in order to save the insurance company money.
All of my bills will be paid by the insurance company.
Insurance companies may question treatment, overlook bills and do a poor job paying your medical bills. In these cases, it’s very important to have the counsel of an experienced workers compensation attorney who knows what types of bills may be overlooked.
The insurance company will pay my future medical needs because they said they will.
A judge’s order is required before any offer to pay your future medical needs are enforceable.
I must listen to the opinion of the workers compensation doctor.
In some situations, you can seek an independent doctor’s review or hire your own medical doctor. In these cases, it’s helpful to have an experienced workers compensation attorney who can help you get the second opinion you may need.
My employer can make me work another shift.
Any offer of light duty work must be reasonable. Reasonableness is a common-sense decision made by the judge.
I have 2 years from settlement to re-open my case.
To re-open your case, you have a short time period based on the language on the agreement you sign. To re-open your case, you must prove to a judge that your case meets certain legal requirements.
Stay focused on your own recovery, and consult with an attorney when you don’t know what the truth is
If you’ve been injured at work and are seeking compensation through a workers compensation claim, consult with an experienced workers compensation attorney at Klezmer Maudlin to get the facts about workers compensation. We care about fighting for the rights of injured persons and workers throughout the state of Indiana. With offices in Evansville, Indianapolis, Lafayette, New Harmony, and Jeffersonville (Louisville, KY), we are well-equipped to handle your case.