I'm getting a lawyer for my workers comp injury and I don't know a lot about it. I was wonder what's the avarage personage % the workers comp lawyers should take in PA and should I have to pay legal fee too ? And how much the avarage legal fee ?
We all work on "contingency" fees -- meaning you don't pay any attorneys fees unless your attorney wins benefits for you in court, preserves benefits for you in court when they are under threat of being reduced or taken away, or works out a lump sum settlement at your request an on terms you request. The standard fee is 20% of the total amount of workers compensation benefits payable to you. Look for a lawyer who also promises to cover all costs of litigation (we do), and who is a certified specialist in Workers Compensation Law, ideally with the highest possible AVVO rating.See question
My husband was assigned to a fire watch detail during 20/15- 2016 and according to the handbook of the union he was entitled to lunch breaks - and due to his not receiving lunch in the extreme heat or even being check on by his manager or supervis...
Very sorry for your loss. This has the makings of a very strong workers compensation fatal claim. Trickiest problem is that cardiologists are not as familiar with offering support for such claims as are doctors who handle other work injuries (such as orthopedic injuries). Please feel free to contact me or any other well-reviewed Workers' Compensation specialist to discuss your rights. A workers' compensation fatal claim could pay you weekly benefits for life or over a very long term, in addition to contribution toward funeral costs.See question
I am a full-time worker Mon-Fri is a typical work week. Since June I've requested off 1 day a week for the summer. So I've been working 4 days a week and not the usual 5. Weds I got hurt took off Thurs came in Fri. I finished the work day and r...
The basic rule is that if you miss fewer than 8 days for a work injury, you get no wage loss benefits and your employer and its insurer get the benefit of treating your claim as a no wage loss claim -- making it easier for them to bury the entire claim. If you miss 8 or more days but fewer than 14 (not necessarily in a row, you get paid only for days 8 through 14. Only if you miss 14 or more days does the comp carrier go back and pick up the first seven, as well.
I predict a strong likelihood that the insurer may test the issue further by having you do a follow up with the company doctor in LESS than two weeks, and pressuring that doctor to change his mind about taking you off work for two weeks, instead clearing you for some form of light duty within that span. If they cannot manipulate that result, they are likely to still pretend that your vacation time does not count toward days missed, since they can get away with that if you have no lawyer and unless and until you contest it.
You also do not state how long you have been working for this employer, but the four day work weeks since June are likely to tempt the comp insurer to treat you as having a lower weekly wage. This is another issue where they will take advantage, even if they do handle yours as a wage loss claim, if you have no lawyer.
The list of issues the insurance company will twist to its advantage in a work injury situation is a very long list, and the list gets longer the more serious your injury is.
Call a Certified Specialist in PA Workers Compensation law. Get advice. If it appears that this will be other than a very short term injury, arrange for the attorney to represent you. A good lawyer who puts his clients first will not pick a fight on any of these issues in such a way that it triggers his "contingent" fee interest if the insurance company is willing to pay without a fight. Under a contingent fee, we only get paid if we win battles for you in court or settle your claim for a lump sum you approve. If you have an injury that may linger or have long term effects on your ability to return to your full work, you have everything to gain and zero to lose from getting a good lawyer involved early.See question
I have a work injury and my employer said I can come back that they made reasonable accomodations for me. What they have me doing is sitting in a room my entire shift they say to just go over my trainings on the computer from when I was hired. I h...
This kind of "no work" job is part of a larger ploy by your employer and its workers compensation insurance folks to treat your clearly disabling injury as something else. That is, you are disabled from your actual productive work, but where they keep you on the payroll doing nothing, they can avoid documenting your claim as a 'wage loss' claim with the Bureau of Workers' Compensation, setting you up for a difficult battle if your injury has any long-term impacts. Meanwhile, the no work job, along with the inconvenient schedule, puts psychological pressure on you, to make you want to quit or to make you take other actions contrary to your rights -- such as having you press for a "release" from a company referred doctor even when you still have significant problems, so that you can be cleared back to a better work schedule even if working in pain or under conditions that will prevent you from making a proper physical recovery. Your employer is manipulating the workers' compensation system in a way that is intended to thwart you from asserting any rights. This type of treatment from your employer can be very damaging to your rights if your injury is serious or long-term. A certified workers compensation specialist will be able to look for flaws in the way the employer is trying to manipulate the system, and may be able to turn these to your advantage if you have other than a short term problem. Call a good, tough, Certified PA workers' compensation specialist today.See question
I was told a notice of ability to return to work must be issued before going back to work light duty after a work injury?
I would add, in addition to the other very good responses, that if your are still within the first 90 days since your injury or onset of disability, the employer and insurance carrier have full flexibility to deny or dispute your claim, even if currently acknowledged under a "temporary" notice. In general, if you are refusing available light duty, you will face problems with your claim, and these problems might control the claim if you don't have your own medical support disabling you from the light duty.
All of these comments should make it clear that nothing in workers compensation law is simple or straightforward. The insurance adjuster knows the complexities of the Act better than you do. Get a lawyer who is a certified Workers' Compensation Specialist to help you through the minefield.See question
I have a work injury went back to work light duty. I am a cashier but, being not able to push pull or lift only under 5 pounds. They had me cleaning. No problem but, then made me mop. And I guess going back and fourth with the mop aggravated my in...
Depending on the circumstances of your claim and the circumstances of your attempted return to work, the insurer might have "stopped" a "Notice of Temporary Compensation" (which is kind of a legally approved sham way for an insurer to make you feel they have accepted your injury within the first 90 days after an injury but without them actually becoming at all legally liable) or might have suspended your comp payments with a "Notification of Suspension or Modification." In the later case, a clock would be ticking such that if you fail to take action within 20 days from the date of such Notification of Suspension (often the same date as the first day back at work), you could have a much tougher battle in court than you would with a timely "Challenge" to the Notification.
This stuff is complex. You NEED a good lawyer. Even many lawyers don't understand the complexities of a work injury claim, which is why the PA Supreme Court allows for "specialist" certification in the field of Workers Compensation law in PA. Call a Certified Workers' Compensation Law Specialist right now, if you have not already done so.See question
I have been on workers comp only for a month and a half. Been through therapy nothing working. Mri being done this week but, I am hurting and not getting any therapy now until after mri. Insurance carrier won't let me go any where else for treat...
A settlement at this point in your claim, particularly if not negotiated with the help of a skilled attorney, would almost certainly only be for a fraction of the value of your rights. The simple reality is that this early in your claim you have no meaningful leverage to secure a settlement.
Almost certainly, you claim is only "accepted" on a "temporary" basis. The boxed language on the "Notice of Temporary Compensation Payable" you may have received will say that the form is good for up to 90 days and will also say that neither your employer or its insurance carrier has actually accepted ANY actual enforceable liability for your work injury. Meaning they can walk away from your claim at any point within the first 90 days just by sending you a new piece of paper -- leaving you with the "burden of proof" to establish your claim in court.
Since you indicate you are working with restrictions, the insurer is likely to try to keep you in that status while they work to get their doctors to downplay your injury in the hopes they might claim you have recovered before the 90 days is up. They could then completely deny you any future rights and make it difficult for you to pursue your claim in court. They will often do this even with significant, long-term injuries, arguing that your long-term problems are "degenerative" and that the work injury was just a minor strain or sprain with only temporary effects. Listen for the company doctor to use the word "degenerative" when he describes any positive findings on your MRI and you will see what I mean.
The PA Workers' Compensation Act gives many advantages to employers and insurance companies in the first 90 days of a claim, which they can manipulate so as to make things hard for the injured worker in the months that follow for any serious injury they prefer to contest. This can be made much worse if they feel the injured worker is interested in a quick settlement more so than making the right moves to force them to meet their own obligations under the Workers Compensation Act. They will assume that if they play games with you, it will only help them put the squeeze to you, such that they'll be able to easily deny, dispute or downplay your claim, do what they can to make you desperate, and then, only if they absolutely have to (perhaps to avoid costs of litigation while meanwhile they starve you), offer you a chump change settlement.
They know the game. You don't.
This does NOT mean you can't win -- far from it. Your work injury gives you rights! It is only that the insurance adjuster knows how to minimize your rights and control your claim in ways that will make you feel like you are pounding your head into a wall.
Fight fire with fire. You need to get a lawyer who is a Certified Specialist in PA Workers' Compensation Law working with you as soon as possible, to put your case on a track where a true, full value settlement will be possible. Things like your employer "playing games" with your restrictions can actually be turned into advantages for your claim, if you have a savvy attorney exploiting the missteps of the employer and the insurance company, particularly in the early days of a claim.
Search the websites of every attorney you see responding here. I would love to help you and I am sure they would, too. Get a lawyer on board as soon as possible. It costs you nothing to do so, since you will absolutely need a lawyer before you are done and the contingency fee is only paid when we secure benefits for you or with a settlement we negotiate on your behalf. Go with a lawyer who will give your case individual attention, rather than with a big firm where you may end up with someone who is less experienced, since in a case like yours still within the first 90 days, you need seasoned advice from someone savvy enough to make the right moves to secure your rights.See question
I have been out for a shoulder injury. Claim accepted and being paid. I went back to light duty. That night my shoulder swelled badly had dr appt next day was taken back to original restrictions(Which my work woukdnt originally accomodate) everyth...
Since you have been on comp for less than 90 days, it is very likely that your claim is truly "accepted" other than by a Notice of TEMPORARY Compensation Payable. If you read the fine print on that form, it confirms that the temporary acceptance is good for up to 90 days from the start of your disability but also confirms that neither the employer or their insurance carrier has actually accepted any legal liability in the meantime. This means they can still deny your claim any time within that 90 days and it would still be your burden in court to prove your injury and your disability status.
Meanwhile, the employer could decide to fire you for failing to report for available light duty, but this could look very bad for them in court if you have decent medical arguments for being off work, AND you move to secure the kind of medical support you will need if the employer both tries to fire you and decides to stop temporary compensation on the argument that you refused to work in available light duty.
Your specific situation is common. The employer will use the 90 days of "no liability" temporary compensation to steer your medical treatment and to try to position itself to avoid any long-term exposure for your injury. Shoulder injuries often require surgery and/or prolonged recovery times. The employer and its doctors are likely to claim the work injury is merely a "strain/sprain" to the shoulder and that the very serious pathology you describe is somehow "degenerative" and not their responsibility. Meanwhile, they will want to do all they can to have you back at work in any duty they can get away with, to avoid a wage loss claim and give you the steepest possible up-hill battle to get the comp you deserve, since you clearly cannot do your pre-injury job in your current condition.
Talk to a Certified Workers' Compensation Law Specialist as soon as possible. A truly conscientious lawyer will guide you in your dealings with the employer and its workers' compensation representatives, will advise you regarding your rights and options for getting supportive medical treatment, and will work to make your claim strong to allow you to avoid a fight (even when the employer tries to stop benefits ahead of their 90 day "temporary" cut off) or put you in a position where you can be sure to win your rights and/or secure a lump sum settlement for your serious injuries.
If local attorneys are unresponsive, look for one who represents injured workers throughout Pennsylvania.See question
and now my employer doctor send me back to work. to clean 10 to 12 rooms and my back still hurting me i can't bend down enough,am i force to go back to work why i pain. i need help please.
It is very typical for employer-referred doctors to push injured workers back to work, often with very inadequate "restrictions" that the employer may or may not really try to honor. Many "occupational health" medical practices even have strict policies that the doctors are not permitted to take anyone fully out of work but ONLY to write up stated restrictions. This often make no sense when the injury and the job are simply incompatible or when it is an injury of a kind that can only recover with time off from work. The reason is to benefit the employer and allow them to sweep work injury claims under the rug.
A big first question in this situation is whether your employer even met its own obligations to allow them to restrict you to their occupational health medical providers. A skilled attorney will be able to discuss with you your options. Look for one who is a Certified Specialist in PA Workers Compensation Law.See question
I had a panel Dr appt yesterday and also had my first physical therapy appt and I was too sore and in pain which is normal after first session I called and reschedule for Friday because I knew I wouldn't make it today and I took my muscle relaxers...
As others indicate, IF you are within your first 90 days of treatment and IF the employer/insurer properly jumped through their hoops to have an actually enforceable right to limit your access to "panel" medical providers, the employer/insurer will have a significant degree of control over the medical evidence in your claim during the early going -- and they will use this to limit your rights and to put themselves into a position to deny or dispute your claim, or any resulting wage loss, etc., sooner or later. In the early going, they want to limit what time you miss from work, since this may control whether they can fully sweep your claim under the rug. They likely were counting on having you seen by a doctor subject to their control or influence on, say, Wednesday rather than Friday, because they are convinced that as soon as their panel sees you, he will clear you to return to at least light duty work. Sometimes they even have a specific, reliable "hatchet man" with the given medical provider who they know will give them what they want -- and he if only there on Wednesday and not Friday, they want to box you in. Sometimes a "nurse case manager" -- whose job is to act like your friend while working to undermine your claim, will plan to attend the medical appointment with you so they can influence how the panel doctor documents the visit and to limit what follow-up or diagnostic testing he approves, or to press him/her to make a referral to some outside "hatchet man" with another practice who may be more willing to downplay your injury or claim your symptoms are not real.
The kind of pressure you are seeing here means the employer and/or insurer are very interested in taking steps to control not just your medical access but the impact of your medical treatment on their obligations and on your rights. This is why every attorney here is recommending you fight back by getting an attorney to advise you, as soon as possible. There are measures you can take to fight back and to improve your side of the case so that the insurance company will not be holding all of the cards.
Look for an attorney who is a Certified Specialist in PA workers' compensation, who has a very high Avvo rating, and who has multiple favorable client reviews, and you cannot go far wrong. Having an attorney involved early does not cost you anything, since we all work on contingency, though you want one who puts your needs first and who will not jump in and pick a fight immediately if that is not what is in your best interest. Sometimes it is better to have an attorney simply monitoring your situation and giving you advice in the background, waiting to exploit some of the stupid things employers and insurer's try to do when they thing you will not know better. A savvy and experienced workers' compensation specialist, including many of us who have posted here, will be able to help you.See question