When should employers hire a workers’ comp lawyer?

By Anica Oaks

Though most workers’ comp claims do not end in lawsuits, this does not mean you as an employer should not seek out the advice of an attorney when one of your employees files a workers’ comp claim. Since these claims do not happen every day, it is vital you have legal advice that is accurate and helps you understand the various things that may take place along the way. As to when you should hire a workers’ comp lawyer, here are a few instances when an attorney should be by your side.

Employee appeals the claim decision

If your employee files a workers’ comp claim that is initially rejected, they will likely appeal the decision. When they do, it is almost certain they will retain an attorney who specializes in workers’ comp claims. Therefore, you should do the same to ensure your rights as an employer are protected throughout the process.

Employee rejects their right to benefits

In a scenario where you will definitely need a workers comp attorney, an employee who rejects their right to workers’ comp benefits is almost certain to pursue a lawsuit against you, their employer. When your employee files their claim and is offered benefits or a settlement package and chooses to accept, this means they in return waive their right to sue. When benefits are rejected, plan on hiring an experienced workers’ comp lawyer to handle your case.

You don’t have workers’ comp insurance

Should your business fail to purchase workers’ comp insurance when it is required by your state, you will be getting calls and probably a visit from OSHA officials. If this occurs, you will need expert legal advice. Should you not have workers’ comp insurance and have one of your employees get injured on the job, you’ll not only be held liable for the employee’s medical bills but also probably face penalties and fines from state and federal agencies.

Protect your company’s reputation

In some instances when an employee gets injured on the job and files a workers’ comp claim, numerous allegations are made against their employer. By being proactive and immediately hiring an attorney who specializes in this area of law, you can work to protect your company’s reputation. Whether the case goes to court or is settled out-of-court, making sure you understand the law and that the real story is told will be very important moving forward.

Unfortunately, workers’ comp claims are situations that can turn nasty in a hurry. By having an attorney on the case from day one, you can be sure your rights as an employer are protected from start to finish.

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Anica Oaks is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote.

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