If you've suffered an injury at work, you don't always need a compensation attorney. The injury may be very minor, the company owner or insurance company may readily pay any lost wages and medical bills, and you may soon be back to work. However, there are times when you may need to pursue a claim against your employer or the insurance company, and an attorney is the best choice for ensuring your success. Note when it's usually good to hire a worker's compensation attorney versus trying to "go it alone" and pursue your own case.
You think your boss is retaliating against you
If you've been injured on the job, your boss may have the right to assign you other responsibilities that are manageable for you while you heal, if your doctor gives the okay for you to go back to work. Your boss may also reduce your hours, according to your doctor's orders. However, if you think your boss is retaliating against you for filing a compensation claim by giving you a very lowly job, by slashing your hours unnecessarily, or by reducing your pay, it's time to call an attorney. Your boss may be within his or her legal rights to make some changes to your job, but if you're facing retaliation for filing a claim, an attorney can ensure your legal rights are protected as well.
You have a pre-existing condition
Having a pre-existing condition doesn't necessarily mean that you should be denied a claim for worker's compensation, but it's not unusual for an insurance company to use that condition as a reason to fight your claim. An attorney can review your medical records and record of your injury and then help determine your rights and how to protect that claim no matter your medical condition.
You have a scar or long-term injury
If you have any type of long-term consequence to your injury, including a scar, limp, breathing disorder, and the like, you want to contact an attorney. In this case, you may be entitled to more than just repayment for lost wages and medical expenses, but may have a claim for compensatory damages, meaning money that compensates you for that injury. This will depend on the extent of the long-term damage you suffer and if you can ever return to work, the type of scar you have, if there is a risk for serious health consequences down the road, and other such factors. An attorney can review all that information and ensure you receive all the compensation you deserve.