Often times, I hear people say, “Why would I hire a workers’ compensation attorney? My employer is paying my medical bills.” Before practicing workers’ compensation law, I had the same school of thought. What I learned after diving into the area of Kentucky comp is there are several reasons to hire a workers’ compensation attorney, even when the employer is not contesting that the employee’s injury occurred at the workplace.
Reasons Why You Should Get a Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Lawyer For Your Case…
Workers’ Compensation Can Be Complex – It’s difficult for an injured employee to navigate the system without the help of an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer.
Kentucky Attorney’s Fees for a Workers’ Compensation Case are Contingent – Contingent means that the attorney does not receive any form of compensation unless the injured employee recovers a settlement. Therefore, the injured employee has nothing to lose by hiring a workers’ compensation attorney to file his or her claim.
Employers Have a Conflict of Interest and Want You Back on the Job Quick – Even though an employer may not contest that an employee’s injury happened at work, the employer’s goal is to get the employee back to work as soon as possible. With this goal in mind, the injured employee may not be receiving proper medical treatment or the employer or insurance company may be forcing the employee to work in violation of medical restrictions from the employee’s treating physician. Hiring an experienced Northern Kentucky workers’ compensation attorney can help the employee navigate these issues if they pop up and the attorney will help to ensure that the injured worker is receiving proper medical treatment.
You Don’t Need the Hassle of Dealing with the Employer’s Insurance Company – When hiring a workers’ compensation attorney, the employee no longer has to deal directly with the employer’s insurance company. The attorney handles all medical records and deals directly with all insurance companies involved leaving the injured worker to focus on his or her treatment.
Ensure You Get a FAIR Settlement – Hiring an experienced Northern Kentucky workers’ compensation lawyer can help an employee receive a fair settlement at the end of his or her treatment. Without an attorney, insurance companies may offer an employee a settlement that the employer believes is fair and the employee may accept the first offer, not knowing that settlements are negotiable. A workers’ compensation attorney can help with the settlement process and negotiate a fair settlement for all parties involved.
Also Know That If a Claim Has Been Denied by the Insurance Company That You Still Have Options….
Other times, I hear people say that they were injured at work and their workers’ compensation claim has been denied by the insurance company. The injured worker may wrongfully believe that the denial is the end of the road. In this situation, it is imperative that the injured employee speaks with a workers’ compensation attorney because he or she could be missing out on the opportunity to have medical bills related to the injury paid and a settlement at the end of the case. Just because an employer says that an employee’s injury did not occur while the employee was on the clock, it is not the end of the road for the injured employee. When an employee’s injury is denied by the insurance company, a workers’ compensation attorney can file the employee’s claim, which gives the employee the opportunity to be heard in front of a Kentucky Administrative Law Judge who then determines if the employee’s injury is in fact work-related and compensable.
If you or someone you know has been injured on the job, don’t wait to contact a Northern Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Attorney. Lawrence & Associates can help get you the benefits that you deserve!
Because Lawrence & Associates is located along I-75 and conveniently close to Cincinnati, OH, we often help injured workers who live outside the state. It is very common for injured workers to work at a factory or warehouse – such as the Amazon warehouse in Boone County, Kentucky – but live in Ohio or Indiana. If you are injured while working in Kentucky, then you will be covered by Workers’ Compensation in Kentucky! Companies located within the state are not required to have Workers’ Comp insurance in the state where you live.
Kentucky’s law says that your employer has to provide Kentucky Workers’ Compensation to you if any of the following are true…
You mostly work in Kentucky.
You work all over, but were hired in Kentucky. This would be true for a lot of truck drivers who drive all over the country, but report back to a depot in Kentucky and were hired out of that depot.
You work in a state where your employer doesn’t have Workers’ Comp insurance, but were hired in Kentucky. This is true for a lot of people that live in Cincinnati and work out of their homes in Cincinnati, but have been hired by a company in Northern Kentucky.
You work outside the country, but were hired in Kentucky.
Basically, if you were injured while working in Kentucky or were hired in Kentucky and got injured elsewhere, you should consider talking to a Kentucky Workers’ Compensation attorney. At Lawrence & Associates, we have helped many people just like you receive full and fair compensation for your injuries.
If you or someone you know has a Workers’ Comp issue, please contact a Northern Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Attorney today. Melissa Doss and Lawrence & Associates can help!
In today’s world almost every employer has procedures in place when an employee is injured on the job. In many cases it involves documenting the events that led to the injury and recording them on a form for future use and reference. In Kentucky’s workers’ compensation system, this form is often referred to as a First Report of Injury (or FROI).
First Report of Injury (or FROI)
In this report, the date and location of the injury and the circumstances surrounding the injury are disclosed. When an employee is injured on the job, the employer works with the injured worker in order to complete the form. Once the form has been completed, it is generally kept on site at the workplace. In addition to being kept on site, the employer should submit this form to the Department of Workers’ Claims in Frankfort, Kentucky. The FROI provides as a documentation of your injury, which can provide helpful information concerning your workers’ compensation claim down the road.
Filing the FROI Isn’t the Same as Filing a Claim for Worker’s Compensation
Working with your employer to complete and file the FROI is not how an injured worker files a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. Many injured workers are under the impression that they have filed a claim for workers’ compensation benefits by filing a First Report of Injury. This is not true. Filing a First Report of Injury with your employer is helpful in your claim but it is not the same as filing a claim for benefits. It is key to understand the difference between filing a FROI and a workers’ compensation claim because in Kentucky, the statute of limitations for filing a workers’ compensation claim is two years from the date of injury or two years after the last temporary total disability payment, whichever comes later. Although a FROI should be completed as soon as an employee is injured, filling out the FROI is insignificant for purposes of the statute of limitations for filing a workers’ compensation claim. In other words, you can fill out a FROI and still lose your rights to benefits if you do not get an attorney and file a claim with the Department of Workers’ Claims.
If you or someone you know has a Workers’ Comp issue, please contact a Northern Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Attorney today. Danielle Lawrence and Lawrence & Associates can help!
When considering filing for a workers’ compensation claim, it is crucial to keep the statute of limitations in mind. If an injured worker does not file a claim within the allotted time, the claim will not succeed. The statute of limitations provides for filing deadlines for Kentucky Workers’ Compensation claims.
Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Laws
KRS 342.270(1) and KRS 342.185(1) state that injury claims must be filed within two years of the date of the accident, or last payment of voluntary income benefits, also known as temporary total disability benefits (TTD), whichever occurs later in time. “Income benefits” are defined in KRS 342.0011(12) to be those payments made per KRS 342 to the disabled worker or his or her dependents in case of death, excluding medical and related benefits. For instance, if an employee is injured at work on January 1, 2012 and paid TTD by his employer until January 1, 2014, he has until January 1, 2016 in order to file a workers’ compensation claim.
Notifying the Department of Workers’ Claims
Where TTD has been terminated by the employer, the employer must notify the Department of Workers’ Claims of the termination so that the employee can be advised of his/her right to file a claim. Failure to notify the Department of Workers’ Claims will toll the statute. City of Frankfort v. Rogers, Ky. App., 765 S.W.2d 579 (1988).
Gradual Injuries and Statute of Limitations
With regard to injuries that develop gradually from the repetitive trauma, the statute of limitations begins running when an employee has been told by a health care professional that the injury or condition is work-related. Often times, an injured worker won’t know that his or her injury caused by repetitive trauma may be covered under workers’ compensation; however, in many cases, workers’ compensation will cover the injury as long as a medical professional opines that the repetition caused the injury.
Lawrence & Associates is dedicated to helping work injury victims in the Greater Cincinnati area receive the compensation they deserve. If you or someone you know has been in an accident at work, call Lawrence & Associates today.
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