I generally encourage clients not to go this route and only if it is a last resort.
This Reply is intended to be helpful to the Asker and the Avvo Community, but it does not constitute legal advice and does not create any attorney-client relationship.
First, you need to speak to an attorney immediately if you do not already have one. It sounds as if the employer is getting ready to deny your claim, including medical and income benefits. If your wages are suffering due to a work-related injury, income benefits, most likely 2/3s of the reduction in your weekly wages may be available to you. Other income need its may also be available for any time missed from work, as well as medical treatment.
As for preset talent funding, you have that option but the rates are usually very high. I personally recommend using it only in an emergency. You should definitely speak with an attorney first.
I offer a free consultation and would be more than happy to speak with you.
B. Shawn Rhodes
Powers and Rhodes, LLP
It sounds as though you find yourself in a similar situation as many of my clients. Unfortunately, delays are common in nearly every workers' compensation claim. An attorney can help you move things forward. Be careful with pre-settlement funding, as there is a Georgia Workers' Compensation Board Rule prohibiting it.
I strongly urge you to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. I also do not encourage pre settlement funding. It is a horrible interest rate and not good for the client though we understand why sometimes it is used.
I am not quite sure that I understand your question. There are medical and indemnity benefits available to an injured worker during the case. I gather that your employer has not decided if it is going to accept the case. I would not recommend presettlement funding if at all possible.
Your employer will do what it can to spend as little money on your case as legally allowed. I am sorry that you are having so many problems.
Delay is a common tactic of employers and insurers in workers' compensation claims. They want to hold on to their money as long as possible. An added benefit to them is that it often makes the claimant more desperate to settle their case, and therefore likely to take less money to do so. The only thing that keeps the pressure on them is the hearing date.
Board Rule 84 addresses the issue of pre-settlement funding. This rule states: "No party to a claim or any party’s attorney shall assist, secure, create, or execute any loan or assignment with a third party creditor which requires repayment out of any recovery, settlement, or payment of benefits from any claim filed under this chapter." This rule prohibits such funding in workers' compensation cases. Whether that is fair to the injured worker who is in desperate need of funds is another question.
You didn't mention whether or not you are represented by an attorney. If you aren't, I would suggest that you consult an attorney as soon as possible. My office provides free consultations, and I would be more than willing to speak to you about your case. On the other hand, if you do have an attorney, you should be discussing these issues with him or her. Good luck!
There is really no way to give you an intelligent answer to your question about why your employer is defending the claim without a lot more information. But I can answer your question about pre-settlement funding. The workers compensation board has a rule prohibiting approval of any settlement that provides a recovery to these companies and your attorney is prohibited from signing any such lien for you. These companies charge exorbitant interest rates and usually will not deal with you unless you have an attorney who is willing to agree that the lien will be honored. Since attorneys are forbidden from that, they will not give you the loan.
Generally, the law provides for the payment of weekly benefits to injured workers where the inability to work is due to a work-related injury. These benefits would be paid while the case is open, but will only start once the insurance company voluntarily pays them or the Judge orders them to. A workers' compensation attorney can help you with this, as well as other decisions specific to your situation in the meantime. Re: immediate funding, it's against the rules and will more than likely put you in an even worse position in the long run. Contact an Avvo attorney to guide you through this and good luck!
*Attorney Thomas Andrew Miller (678-807-9519) provided this Reply which is intended to be helpful to the Asker and the Avvo Community, but it does not constitute legal advice and does not create any attorney-client relationship. You are urged to seek the advice of an attorney or, in some cases, a tax professional, before taking any action. **Was this Answer helpful? Please click to give the Answer a Helpful Vote or make it the Best Answer!