Baton Rouge Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Workplace accidents that result in major injuries and disability can have a devastating impact on the victim’s life. Any type of work-related injury can have long-term financial and emotional effects on victims and their families. Even the most minor on-the-job injuries can result in large medical bills, time off work, lost income, and chronic pain. Let our Baton Rouge workers’ comp attorneys assist you with your case.
The Baton Rouge area depends heavily on industrial workers and these types of jobs come with known safety risks. When you’ve been involved in a work-related accident it’s important to know your rights. Louisiana workers’ compensation is designed to provide financial support for injured workers while they recover. In many cases, employers and insurance companies will try to reduce their liability to minimize the amount of compensation the victim receives. When something like this happens an experienced workers’ compensation attorney in Baton Rouge knows just how to navigate an often confusing and lengthy process of obtaining your due workers’ comp benefits. At Gordon McKernan Injury Attorneys in Baton Rouge, we have decades of experience handling workers’ compensation cases for clients in Baton Rouge. Contact our Baton Rouge personal injury lawyers for your free consultation today.
Depending on the severity of your work-related injury, you may be eligible for several types of Baton Rouge workers’ compensation Coverage including:
- Temporary Total Disability (TTD) – This coverage may be available if you have special certification from your doctor that you are unable to return to work while you are still recovering from your injuries.
- Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) – If your doctor places restrictions on your physical activity that inhibit you from performing certain job tasks but you are still able to work at a reduced capacity, TPD benefits cover the difference in your pay.
- Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) – Depending on your specific situation, you may be eligible for additional compensation above the physical impairment caused by your work-related injury.
- Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) – In cases where an injury results in permanent disability that prevents you from returning to work for the rest of your life, you may qualify for TPD workers’ compensation benefits.
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Medical Benefits After an On-the-Job Injury
Employers are required to provide their employees with medical care for any injuries that occur while on the job. Generally speaking, you are able to choose your own doctor or specialist once your injury is diagnosed. However, your employer may also choose a physician to provide a second opinion.
Hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer in Baton Rouge can help you to get the medical care you need by assisting in communicating with the insurance provider, your employer, and your doctor to ensure that you’re receiving proper treatment. Our attorneys at Gordon McKernan Injury Attorneys also make sure that procedure approvals are handled in a timely manner and not delayed or denied.
Vocational Retraining After an On-the-Job Injury
If you’re unable to perform your usual work duties as a result of your work-related injury, you may be able to receive job re-training and assistance with finding other employment opportunities within the parameters of your work capabilities and limitations specified by your doctor. A skilled workers’ compensation attorney in Baton Rouge will also ensure that you are not sent back into the workforce before you receive a medical release to return to work.
A Workers’ Comp Lawyer Can Get the Benefits You Deserve
After you’ve been injured on the job, you may have a limited amount of time to make a claim which makes it extremely crucial to notify your employer immediately. Regardless of how small your injury may seem, be sure to file a formal report and see a medical professional as soon as possible. Employees within the state of Louisiana usually have one year from the date of the accident to file a workers’ compensation claim.
If you’re injured while on the job in or near the greater Baton Rouge area, the team at Gordon McKernan Injury Attorneys is here for you. Contact our law firm today at 225.888.8888 for a free consultation with one of our workers’ comp lawyers.
Baton Rouge Workers’ Compensation FAQ
When you’re injured on the job in Baton Rouge, one of the first thoughts is keeping your income flowing. You know that your employer’s workers’ compensation coverage should pay medical and wage loss benefits, but you likely have questions about the specifics of how it works. Asking claims adjusters who speak insurance jargon is often of little help.
We provide this Baton Rouge Workers’ Compensation FAQ to fill the gap. Below are answers to some of the most frequent questions we get about workers’ compensation.
How does workers’ compensation work in Baton Rouge?
When you sustain an on-the-job injury in Baton Rouge, your employer must pay benefits as required by Louisiana’s Worker’s Compensation statutes and must have a system in place to make sure you receive timely benefits.
Who pays my Baton Rouge workers’ compensation benefits?
Most Baton Rouge companies purchase a workers’ compensation insurance policy to pay covered benefits. But some companies self-insure their workers’ compensation claims, meaning they pay claims directly out of their company funds. The state certifies self-insurers to ensure their program complies with Louisiana’s workers’ compensation standards.
What benefits may I receive under workers’ compensation in Baton Rouge?
Workers’ compensation in Baton Rouge pays various benefits for work-related injuries and diseases.
- Medical expenses based on a reimbursement schedule
- Mileage reimbursement for treatment-related travel
- Disability benefits based on your lost wages
- Vocational rehabilitation benefit
- Supplemental Earnings Benefits if you work but earn less than 90 percent of your average weekly wage
- Payments based on a schedule of benefits for permanent and catastrophic disabilities
- Death Benefits to qualified family members
Who handles my claim when my employer reports my injury?
Insurers usually have their workers’ compensation claims adjusters who intake and handle claims. An adjuster handles the day-to-day activities necessary to process your claim and pay your benefits. If an insurance company doesn’t have a claim office in the state, they must hire a licensed claims adjuster with authority to handle claims and make payments.
Self-insured companies usually designate a Claim Administrator. These individuals or independent companies do the same work as an insurance company’s claims adjusters, receiving injury reports, managing claims, and making payments.
Am I eligible for workers’ compensation in Baton Rouge as a new employee, or if I’m not full-time?
In most instances, workers’ compensation coverage applies on your first day of employment and regardless of time-status. The workers’ compensation statute’s Employees Covered section explains that “every person” is covered. It doesn’t designate coverage exceptions based on how long an employee was employed or on an employee’s status as full-time, part-time, seasonal, or minor. You may still qualify for benefits in some situations even if your employer says you are not an employee.
Does workers’ compensation in Baton Rouge cover all types of employees?
Some employees are exempt from workers’ compensation coverage under Louisiana law.
- Private residential workers
- Certain agricultural workers
- Musicians and performers rendering services pursuant to a contract
- Real estate brokers and salespeople
- Unpaid non-profit officers and directors
What types of injuries does workers’ compensation cover in Baton Rouge?
Workers’ compensation coverage in Baton Rouge pays benefits due to work-related injury or disease. Comp statutes cover physical injuries, mental illnesses such as PTSD, and occupational diseases such as carpal tunnel syndrome.
When does the claims adjuster pay my medical bills?
A workers’ compensation insurer or administrator pays for treatment from one doctor in each field or specialty. The medical bills must comply with Louisiana Medical Treatment Guidelines. Once they receive a bill, the claims adjuster must pay it within sixty days, or thirty days if it’s an electronic bill.
How long does it take for an insurer to pay wage loss benefits in Baton Rouge?
Once you cannot work for seven days due to a covered injury, you are eligible for Temporary Total Disability (TTD) or Permanent Total Disability (PTD) payments. When your TTD or PTD benefits are due, the administrator or insurer must pay them by the fourteenth day after the employer receives your injury report. You receive compensation for the first week of your disability only after being disabled for two weeks or longer.
How does an insurer calculate my Baton Rouge wage loss benefits?
The amount of your TTD or PTD wage loss benefits is based on an annual schedule. The Louisiana Workforce Commission Office of Workers’ Compensation sets maximum and minimum payments based on the state’s average weekly wage.
In what case might someone not receive Baton Rouge workers’ compensation benefits?
Your Baton Rouge workplace injury isn’t compensable if it occurred during:
- Personal disputes
- Willful intention to injure yourself or someone else
It’s also possible to jeopardize your payments if you refuse to comply with a valid request for an additional medical opinion, in which case your employer or claim handler has the right to suspend your benefits.
Can I sue my employer because of my work-related injury?
In most instances of Baton Rouge work injuries, workers’ compensation coverage fulfills any legal obligations your employer has for your workplace injury.
There are exceptions, including:
- Your employer injured you intentionally or due to severe negligence
- Your employer failed to purchase a workers’ compensation policy and failed to certify for self-insurance
Can I sue someone other than my employer if I sustained an injury on the job?
In certain Baton Rouge work-related injury cases, you may file a suit against a third party who caused or contributed to your work-related injuries, including when:
- A non-employer or non-coworker injures you in an auto accident
- A non-employer or non-coworker injures you in the workplace
- A manufacturer’s defective product injures you while working
- An owner of a property that your employer doesn’t own if that person failed to maintain safe premises and caused your injury
When you sue a negligent third party, your employer or its insurer has the right to join as a party to the lawsuit. They also have a right to protect their legal interests by seeking reimbursement from the negligent party without filing a lawsuit. You, your employer, and its insurer must comply with Louisiana’s legal procedures and file a lawsuit within one year of the injury-causing accident.
Do I need a lawyer to handle my Baton Rouge worker’s compensation claim?
Some workers’ compensation claims are uncomplicated, but problems often arise when you’re dealing with a serious injury and posing a higher level of liability to your employer or their insurer. If you’re injured on the job in Baton Rouge, it is to your advantage to consult with an experienced attorney to discuss your legal rights and obligations. An attorney can determine if you have the right to sue the third party contributing to your injury. An attorney can deal with claim handlers to help you resolve disputes, benefit suspensions, and lump-sum settlements.
When you schedule a consultation, a legal representative talks to you about your accident and discusses your options. You make the final decisions about whether to retain an attorney or move forward with your claim by yourself.
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Settlements & Verdicts – Workers’ Compensation
Frequently Asked Questions
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