Our worker’s Compensation Lawyers Are Here to Help You Get The Benefits You Deserve
worker’s comp is a type of insurance that employers are required to carry if they have over a certain number of employees. The regulations for this vary from state to state. This insurance is something that the employer pays premiums for each month that help to cover claims should someone get injured while on the job. It is intended to help to pay for an injured employee’s time off work, medical bills and more.
There are rules in different jurisdictions that do affect how a claim is filed and how likely it is that you are going to get a settlement. With any worker’s comp claim, you want to ensure that you are following the rules and regulations of the state you are in to avoid your claim being rejected. A good worker’s comp lawyer is going to be able to help you get your case filed and heard so that you can get the best settlement possible.
Fortunately, you do not have to fight for a worker’s comp settlement alone. If you’ve been injured on the job, an experienced Elkhart, Indiana, worker’s compensation lawyer can help you get the benefits you deserve.
Protect yourself after a workplace injury — call Coriden & Coriden at 812-375-9800 as soon as possible to learn about worker’s compensation law, your rights, and the best way to proceed with getting the benefits you deserve.
How a worker’s Compensation Lawyer in Elkhart, IN, Can Help You Get Benefits
Indiana law requires most businesses to have worker’s compensation insurance for their employees who are injured while working at their job. Workers are covered from the first day on the job.
To help you get benefits, our Elkhart worker’s comp lawyers can:
- Make sure you know what to say and do after you are injured to meet Indiana requirements and prevent hurting your case
- Ensure all claim forms are filled out correctly, in a timely manner
- Investigate how the accident happened, interviewing witnesses and gathering evidence such as photos, videos, and work and medical records to help prove your claim
- Dispute denials and negotiate with insurance companies for a fair settlement
- Represent you at any hearings. Disputes not resolved through the Informal Dispute Resolution process require filing an Application for Adjustment of Claim (SF 29109) within two years of the date of injury. The case is then assigned to a Single Hearing Member of the worker’s Compensation Board for determination of all unresolved issues.
- Prepare your case and argue on your behalf if a claim goes to trial
- Handle any appeals.
With something as difficult — and as important – as a worker’s compensation claim, you can truly benefit from the help of an experienced lawyer. It is important that you take the time to find one who knows the ropes, who is going to work with you and help you make your case and get the best outcome and the best settlement possible.
Elkhart, IN, Workers’ Comp Lawyers Know the Benefits You May be Entitled to Indiana workers’ compensation insurance provides both medical and financial benefits to workers and to the family of a worker who is killed on the job.
To get benefits, you must meet certain requirements:
- You must be a covered employee. Indiana law requires employers to purchase worker’s compensation insurance for all employees, including temporary employees and minors.
- Your injury or illness must have resulted from employment-related tasks.
- You must notify your employer as soon as possible after you’ve been injured, and within 30 days of the injury, or your claim may be denied.
- You should let your employer know about your injury before seeking medical care, unless the injury is serious, in which case you should get treatment immediately.
- You must file all required forms within the required timeframes; these can be found on the Indiana workers’ compensation website.
In a successful worker’s comp claim, benefits should cover some of your income while you are unable to work, in addition to the medical costs that result from your work injury. Benefits may include:
- Two-thirds your average weekly wage during the time that you are found unable to work by the insurance company’s authorized physician. This is not to exceed $600 per week, if you are considered temporarily totally disabled — meaning you are currently unable to work but are expected to recover enough to return to work. Permanently disabled individuals not expected to return to work may collect a larger portion of prior weekly earnings, and the percentage may increase with the severity of the injury.
- Payment for permanent partial impairment, or a partial disability classified by the insurance company’s authorized physician.
- Payment of medical expenses to physicians authorized by the insurance company, and reimbursement of related out-of-pocket expenses, hospital bills, co-pays, the costs of prescription medicines, rehabilitation services, physical or occupational therapy, and transportation costs to and from your doctor visits.
- Retraining benefits for new jobs if employees are unable to return to their previous position.
- Beneficiary expenses for funeral and burial expenses to beneficiaries of an employee who dies as the result of work-related illness or injury.
As a general rule, you will be able to collect worker’s compensation benefits until you are able to go back to work or reach age 65 if you are permanently disabled.
When our Coriden & Coriden lawyers handle your case, we will work to make sure you receive all benefits you are entitled to.
Elkhart worker’s Comp Attorneys Answer Your Questions
It’s natural to have questions when dealing with a work injury. Here are some answers to questions our lawyers are often asked:
What Happens if My Claim is Disputed or Denied?
If your legitimate claim is disputed or denied, our worker’s comp attorneys in Elkhart can fight for your rights. Depending on the individual circumstances of your case, we can:
- Initiate an informal dispute by filing a Request for Assistance (State Form 45442) with the Workers’ Compensation Board of Indiana
- Hire a mediator, a trained and neutral party who attempts to come to a resolution of disputed issues
- File an Application for Adjustment of Claim (SF 29109) to schedule a formal hearing before a member of the Workers’ Compensation Board
- Appeal a worker’s comp denial. Our attorneys would start by answering any objections and providing additional supporting medical documentation, or we can submit to an independent medical exam and file an appeal. If still denied, we would file an application for an adjustment to your claim with the worker’s Compensation Board of Indiana for review to have the initial denial overturned. There can be a hearing before a board member; that outcome can be appealed to the full board; and that decision could be appealed to the Indiana appellate and supreme courts.
How Much Can I Get in a worker’s Comp Settlement?
Each case is different in terms of how much you can get and what sort of settlement you might end up with. There are factors like the overall extent of your injury and what it is going to take to get you back to your former state of health, whether your injuries are permanent or temporary, and, of course, what you are going to have to do to get back on track.
Indiana law may also dictate how much you can get, so you do have to keep that in mind and you do have to consider this when you are dealing with a worker’s comp claim. Most claims are going to give you 2/3 of your weekly pay plus the cost of your medical bills as your settlement until you can get back on the job.
What industries are at highest risk for work-related injuries or illnesses?
Numerous industries carry a higher risk of work injury. If you were injured at work in Elkhart while working in one of these industries or in any other sector, you are entitled to seek the full amount of worker’s compensation. The highest risk industries include:
- Construction – The construction industry is one of the most dangerous in the United States, due to slips and falls, falling objects, electrocution and equipment-related accidents.
- Transportation – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that the trucking and transportation industry sees a high rate of work-related fatalities.
- Healthcare – According to OSHA, hospitals are one of the most hazardous places to work, due to exposure to infectious diseases, hazardous materials, repetitive motions, and having to manually lift patients. If you work at facilities near Elkhart — such as Frazier Rehab Institute, Scott Memorial Hospital, Schneck Medical Center, Medical Center of Southern Indiana, Baptist Health Floyd, or Clark Memorial Hospital — you may be facing a significantly higher risk.
What are the most common work injuries?
At Coriden & Coriden our worker’s comp attorneys deal with a wide range of work-related injuries and illnesses, as well as wrongful death actions that result from work injuries. Injuries we often handle include:
- Occupational diseases — any chronic disease caused by or due to activities or environmental factors at work.
- Electrocution and electric shock injuries, including serious burns, internal damage and death
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Quadriplegia and paraplegia and other types of paralysis
- Vision loss and eye injuries
- Hand and arm, finger, leg, foot and toe amputations
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Neck, lower back and spinal cord injuries that can lead to permanent disability, paralysis and death
- On-the-job violence.
These injuries can be long lasting; they can cause permanent disfigurement; they can cause you to have to go on disability; and they can cause lasting mental anguish as well. Your lawyer is going to be able to better assess your injuries and see what needs to be presented to get you a great settlement.
What if my employer does not have worker’s comp insurance?
A small number of employers are “self-insured,” because they received approval from the worker’s Compensation Board to pay claims out of their own funds. If your employer does not have insurance and you are injured on the job, you may be able to bring a lawsuit for personal injury against your employer. Talk to our attorneys to see if this is possible.
When You Can Go Beyond a Worker’s Comp Settlement
The Indiana worker’s Compensation Act does not provide compensation for non-economic damages, such as for pain and suffering, and does not fully reimburse lost wages. However, there are situations where you may be entitled to file a separate personal injury lawsuit and receive additional compensation. Damage awards for pain and suffering are determined by a jury based on the severity of the injuries and may be substantial.
Examples of these situations include:
- When a third party’s negligence or wrongdoing caused your injuries, such as if an outside contractor caused a vehicle crash while you were working on the job
- If your employer does not subscribe to worker’s compensation, or if you are considered to be an independent contractor.
In addition, you may also file a lawsuit for:
- Denied coverage – If employers deny coverage, claiming you are an independent contractor, and this is a misclassification
- Retaliation – If you were fired from a job because you filed for or received worker’s compensation benefits.
- If you feel that you are entitled to compensation above and beyond what the worker’s comp claim pays out, you should certainly contact a lawyer to help you figure out what you can file and help you build a case that is going to be successful.
Get Help from a Worker’s Compensation Attorney in Elkhart, IN
No matter what the cause of your work-related injury or illness, the compassionate lawyers at Coriden & Coriden in Elkhart, Indiana, are here to help you get the benefits you deserve. Let us take care of all the paperwork, deadlines, documentation, legal requirements and appeals, so you can focus on your recovery.
Call an Elkhart worker’s compensation lawyer at Coriden & Coriden today at 812-375-9800 to get started.
Attorney Terry Coriden
Terry Coriden practices worker’s compensation law as a Partner at Coriden & Coriden, LLC. His entire professional career as an attorney has been committed to worker’s compensation law and making a difference in his community. He is also highly experienced in mediation. Terry is a member and past president of the Bartholomew County Bar Association, a member of the Indiana State Bar Association, and a former board member of the Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum (ICLEF). [ Attorney Bio ]