Should I Get an Attorney Involved with my Claim?
In most cases, an injured worker will not need to hire an attorney in regards to benefits under a Nevada workers compensation claim. Most injuries tend to be less serious, with little time off of work and complete recovery in just a short period of time. Most workers will receive any eligible compensation and any necessary medical care in a timely manner. If the worker understands his or her rights for workers compensation under Nevada law, it is likely that there will not be a need to hire a lawyer during this process. However, a qualified lawyer may be needed if the claim is denied or if the worker knows that it will be necessary to file appeals in order to receive eligible compensation and medical care. In addition, those with more serious injuries that will result in the need for more medical care and time off work would do best to consult with a qualified lawyer for assistance.
Workplace Injuries and Eligibility for Benefits
There are certain guidelines that must be met and followed in order for an injured worker to apply for and to receive workers compensation benefits in the State of Nevada. Most employers are required to purchase and maintain the appropriate insurance coverage for workers who are injured on the job. In order to be eligible for medical treatment and possible financial compensation, the employee’s injury or illness must have occurred on the job or as a natural part of the employee’s normal job duties.
Minor injuries will typically involve very little time missed from work and will generally heal without any permanent disability or difficulty. Minor injuries require limited medical care, with issues being resolved in just a couple of appointments. In these cases, there is very little reason for the worker to need the services of a lawyer. However, more severe injuries will require both more extensive medical care and time off work, typically resulting in the injured worker being eligible for additional benefits from Nevada workers compensation. In cases of more serious injuries, a lawyer can be a valuable resource for an injured employee.
Free Legal Resources
There are legal resources available to everyone who needs to learn more about workers compensation claims in Nevada. Employees who are injured on the job should find out as much information as possible to see what types of rights they have following a work-related injury and what types of medical care or compensation that they might be eligible to receive.
Nevada Attorney for Injured Workers NAIW provides free legal assistance to help injured workers to obtain the compensation to which they are entitled. However, the NAIW is not able to help until the Appeals Officer level of the process. This occurs after a Hearings Officer makes a decision on a claim.
Nevada Division of Industrial Relations provides information for workers compensation, including links to the necessary forms.
Nevada Division of Insurance has information regarding insurers and third party administrators.
Nevada Hearings Division provides information on the hearings process as well as a calendar for the Appeals Officer and the Hearings Officer.
Types of Benefits Available to Injured Workers
Workers who are injured on the job may qualify for a series of benefits, depending on the severity of the condition and the amount of time missed from work due to the injury or illness.
Lost time compensation benefits can be received by the injured worker through temporary total disability (TTD) payments. This is based on a percentage of the worker’s average wages at the time of the accident.
Medical care is available through an approved doctor that can be selected from a list of qualifying physicians and chiropractors that is maintained by the Division of Industrial Relations.
Permanent partial disability (PPD) awards can be received permanent impairment is determined through an evaluation with an approved rating physician. The degree of impairment and other factors will affect the amount of he award, which may be taken in a lump sum or as installments.
Retraining is provided through vocation rehabilitation services for eligible workers whose permanent injuries prevent returning to their original job duties. This benefit may be taken as a retraining program or as a lump sum financial payment instead.
Attorney Can Help with Making Sure Guidelines Are Followed
It is important to follow the guidelines when filing a claim for workers compensation, especially when it comes to filing requirements and meeting deadlines to avoid losing a claim. The injured worker has seven days from the accident to provide notice to the employer in writing of the injury through a Form C-1 “Notice of Injury or Occupational Disease” incident report form. The worker should receive medical care as soon as possible following the accident and request that the treating physician complete the Form C-4 “Employee’s Claim for Compensation/Report of Initial Treatment”. This Form C-4 must be sent to both the employer and the employer’s insurer within 90 days of the accident. An attorney can help make sure that guidelines are followed, paperwork is completed accurately and in a timely manner, and that necessary documents are filed within the approved time frame.
Attorney Can Help with Fighting for Benefits
Those with more serious injuries who will need medical care and will lose time from work should seek legal assistance if their claim is denied or if any appeals occur. Additionally, a lawyer should be consulted for those who experience continued delays in receiving eligible benefits and medical care or those who are not receiving adequate medical treatments. Other times the assistance of an attorney can help are if the injured worker disagrees with the permanent partial disability (PPD) rating given by the evaluating physician and if the worker is denied vocational rehabilitation benefits but is unable to return to his or her old job duties due to permanent impairment.
Choosing the Right Attorney
It is important for an injured employee to choose the right attorney for proper legal representation. Most lawyers will provide a free consultation for workers compensation claims without the need for the worker to make a commitment. Different lawyers offer different services at different rates, so the worker may wish to consult with several attorneys before making a final decision. Take all of your relevant paperwork and documents for the best consultations.
Legal Resources for Workers Compensation Claims in Nevada
The qualified attorneys at the Morris/Anderson Law Firm can help injured workers through every step of the workers compensation claim process. The lawyers can help with filing the necessary documents before deadlines, making sure compensation is received in a timely manner, helping the worker receive appropriate medical care and a fair rating, as well as helping the worker plan for retraining if necessary. With all of the steps and planning involved for an injured worker to recover and move forward with life, it is important to choose an attorney who will look out for that worker to obtain the best service possible at the Morris/Anderson Law Firm.Go to the Next Article