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When injured at work in Hampton Roads, you need to take prompt steps and seek medical care. If you fail to see a doctor or keep up with the follow-up treatment, you may not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. In this post, we are answering a few questions related to such claims and why hiring a Hampton Roads workers’ compensation lawyer is critical.
“I was hurt at work. Can I get workers’ compensation benefits?”
The short answer is yes. All employers in Virginia who have three or more employees are required to have workers’ compensation insurance. An injured worker can file a claim with the insurance company and ask for benefits, which include time loss compensation and costs related to current and future medical care. In some cases, workers with permanent injuries may qualify for additional benefits.
“Can I sue my employer?”
No, employers have immunity from negligence-related lawsuits as they pay for workers’ compensation insurance. You don’t have to prove your employer’s fault to get the benefits, but you cannot sue them either. However, if your employer fires you from the job because you filed a claim or discriminates against you because of the work injury, you may have scope to take legal action.
“Do I need an attorney?”
There are some circumstances when hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer may seem necessary. Examples include –
“Can I afford a workers’ compensation lawyer?”
The good news is most law firms in Virginia offer free consultations for injured workers. You can meet a lawyer specializing in injury law and workers’ compensation claims, and they can offer an assessment. As for the cost of hiring an attorney, you will usually pay a contingency fee, which is only due when you get the benefits. There is no retainer fee or hourly rate involved. The arrangement is highly effective for workers injured at work.
“How to find a good lawyer?”
Find an attorney who represents employees in such cases. You should also check whether the firm deals primarily with workers’ compensation claims and if lawyers have a good track record. You can ask for references or look at online ratings to know if other clients have good experiences to talk about.
Once you get medical care and inform your employer, talk to an attorney and know the workers’ compensation rights and benefits.