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You've Been Injured at Work -- What Next?

You've been hurt at work. First, always go see a doctor. You need proof that you've been injured; if at work or if somewhere else. You also need to find out if this will be a long term or short term injury. For example, if you were driving a semi-truck as your occupation and the wheels lost traction in the snow, causing you to break your leg severally in the accident, this could be a long term injury. If on the other hand you slipped on a wet spot while walking into your office, that may be a short term injury.

Either does not necessarily mean you have a personal injury case, but no matter if the injury is minor or major, you need to know your rights. If you were injured at work, you may fear complaining about it. If this injury impacts your ability to work and enjoy life, you do deserve some form of monetary compensation if a party is responsible.

What if it's a long term injury?
If you suffered a severe injury or were permanently disabled by the accident, this is a long term injury you simply must look into. Beyond paying your medical bills, the company insurance carrier should offer you some help in readjusting; actually they should offer a lot of  help.

If it's a short term injury, is there no chance for financial help?

You still have a very good chance of getting monetary help even for minor injuries. In some cases, it might effect you mentally which can make a big difference. Just because you "only" broke your leg does not mean you have no options.

Do you need a lawyer?

If you are severally injured at work and you are having trouble working with insurance companies, you likely do need a lawyer. Even for minor injuries a lawyer can help. You must first assess the overall severity of the injury, and be able to prove this in court. An experienced personal injury lawyer is very often worth his or her weight in gold. In most cases, you never even go to court; usually an out of court settlement is reached because that's much cheaper for the insurance company.

The old story is the lawyer takes it all, but if you win in court or reach a settlement, depending on the severity you will be compensated for the future.

What if you don't get a lawyer?
It would be wrong to say in all personal injury cases, either at work or somewhere else, you must hire a lawyer. However, it greatly increases your chances of winning. If price is an issue, many lawyers are willing to take money if the settlement occurs. You do not have to hire a lawyer, but the insurance companies are trying to save money, not spend money, and they may hire professionals to prove their case. Likely, you should too.