What To Do If I Am Injured At Work

Get Relief For Workplace Injury

Work-related injuries take place every day. Anyone can get injured on the job from a person who works in the office to a warehouse employee, driver, or construction worker. If you have been injured on the job your first question may be: “I got injured at work what do I do?” This is where workers’ compensation and a workers’ comp claim become your answer.

Workers’ compensation is a system of laws that provides benefits and monetary compensation to employees who are injured or become ill as a result of a work-related accident or any other aspect of their work. In Delaware, most employers are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. This insurance provides important benefits to employees with work-related injuries, including medical treatment, wage replacement, and disability payments.

The workers’ compensation system is important to employees because it provides a safety net in case of on-the-job injuries or illnesses. Without workers’ compensation insurance, injured employees may have to pay for medical expenses and lose wages while they are unable to work. Workers’ compensation insurance helps ensure that injured employees can receive medical treatment, pay their medical bills and cover medical costs during their recovery.

In Delaware, the workers’ compensation system is administered by the Delaware Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation. This agency is responsible for enforcing workers’ compensation laws, investigating claims, and ensuring that injured workers receive the benefits they are entitled to. It is the law that your employer has workers’ compensation coverage.

Overall, workers’ compensation is an important protection for employees in Delaware, providing them with the support they need in case of on-the-job injury or illnesses. This is why it’s critical for injured workers to have a worker’s compensation attorney who can handle legitimate workers’ compensation claims and obtain the financial compensation needed by injured Delaware employees. If you or a loved one has suffered a workplace accident, contact Schmittinger & Rodriguez for a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney who can advise you on the steps to take to obtain benefits.

Steps To Take For Injured Workers

If you’ve been injured at work, it’s important to know your rights and take action to protect yourself. Delaware law requires most employers to provide workers’ compensation insurance to their employees, which means that if you’re injured on the job, you may be entitled to benefits such as medical treatment, wage replacement, and disability payments. Here’s what you should do if you’re injured at work, the types of injuries workers’ comp covers, and the process for filing a workers’ compensation claim in Delaware.

If you’re injured on the job, the first thing you should do is seek medical attention. If your injury is an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. If your injury is not an emergency, notify your employer as soon as possible and seek medical attention from an authorized healthcare provider.

It’s important to report your injury to your employer as soon as possible, ideally within 24 hours. Failure to report your injury within a certain timeframe could jeopardize your eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits.

If you are able, you should document your work injury with photographs and obtain the names of any witnesses. This could be critical when it comes time for your workers’ compensation lawyers to file a claim for the maximum amount you are entitled to under the law.

Types of Injuries Workers’ Comp Covers

Workers’ compensation insurance in Delaware covers a wide range of injuries and illnesses that occur on the job. These can include:

  • Slips, trips, and falls
  • Repetitive motion injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Strains and sprains from overexertion or heavy lifting
  • Burns from exposure to chemicals, heat, or flames
  • Eye injuries from flying debris or exposure to bright light
  • Back and neck injuries from lifting, bending, or twisting
  • Injuries from workplace violence or assaults
  • Hearing loss from exposure to loud noise
  • Auto accidents
  • Construction accidents
  • Respiratory problems from exposure to dust, fumes, or other hazardous substances
  • Mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) caused by a traumatic event at work
  • Traumatic injuries, such as broken bones, burns, or lacerations, that occur as a result of a specific incident at work
  • Occupational illnesses, such as lung disease or repetitive stress injuries, that develop over time due to exposure to workplace hazards
  • Aggravations of pre-existing conditions, such as back pain, that are worsened by your work duties

In general, any injury or illness that arises out of and in the course of your employment is covered by workers’ compensation insurance. Work injuries can be instant or take time to develop. If you believe your serious injury is a workplace injury, contact a Delaware workers’ compensation lawyer immediately to file a timely Delaware workers’ compensation claim.

Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Delaware

To file a workers’ compensation claim in Delaware, you’ll need to follow certain steps:

  1. Notify your employer and supervisor immediately of your injury as soon as possible, ideally within 24 hours.
  2. Seek medical attention from an authorized healthcare provider. Your employer may have a list of authorized providers, or you can find one through the Delaware Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation.
  3. Fill out a Workers’ Compensation Claim Form, which is available from your employer or the Delaware Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation.
  4. Submit the completed claim form to your employer and the Office of Workers’ Compensation.
  5. Cooperate with any investigations into your claim and attend any necessary medical exams or hearings.

Your employer or their workers’ compensation insurance carrier will investigate your claim and determine whether you’re eligible for benefits. If your claim is approved, you may be entitled to medical treatment, wage replacement, disability payments, and other benefits as appropriate.

If your claim is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision. It’s important to consult with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in Delaware if your claim is denied or if you have any questions about the workers’ compensation process.

You should also immediately contact a worker’s comp lawyer to explore all your legal options and assist you in beginning the claims process for workplace accidents since failing to make formal notice can have a significant impact on your claim.

What Benefits Are Paid Under Workers’ Compensation Claims?

Workers’ compensation is the payment (usually by your employer’s workers’ compensation carrier) of three separate benefits when work either causes or worsens a medical condition:

  • Temporary disability benefits are tax-free weekly benefits payable while you are temporarily unable to work because of a work-related medical condition and under active medical treatment.
  • Medical treatment includes all reasonable and necessary medical charges to treat your work-related medical condition. The carrier has the initial right to authorize specific physicians who are competent to treat your condition. If a problem arises concerning the medical treatment you require, you have the right to make an application to a judge. With our assistance, we can work with you and the judge for a determination as to what, if any, additional compensable medical treatment you require.
  • Permanent partial disability is additional compensation that is payable to you if, after your completion of compensable medical treatment, you have a measurable loss of physical function proven by “demonstrable objective medical evidence.” This benefit can be payable to you even if you can return to work.
  • Death benefits

How Much Can I Collect In Workers Compensation Benefits?

The amount of money an injured worker can collect through a workers’ compensation claim in Delaware varies depending on the specific circumstances of their case. Several factors can affect the amount of compensation a worker may receive, including the severity of the injury, the length of time the worker is unable to work, and the worker’s average weekly wage.

In general, workers’ compensation benefits in Delaware can include:

  • Medical expenses related to the injury or illness
  • Wage replacement benefits, which typically amount to two-thirds of the worker’s average weekly wage, up to a maximum amount set by the state each year for lost wages
  • Disability benefits for workers who are unable to return to their previous job or who have a permanent disability
  • Vocational rehabilitation services to help injured workers find new employment if they are unable to return to their previous job

The amount of compensation for medical expenses is usually unlimited, while wage replacement benefits are subject to a maximum weekly amount. It’s important to note that the specific details of a workers’ compensation claim, including the amount of compensation that may be awarded, can vary depending on the individual circumstances of the case. If you have been injured on the job in Delaware, it’s important to speak with Delaware workers’ compensation lawyers who can help you understand your rights and pursue the compensation you deserve.

What Can I Do If My Workers’ Compensation Claim Is Denied?

If your workers’ compensation claim is denied in Delaware, you have the right to appeal the decision through the Delaware Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation. The appeals process typically involves several steps, which your experienced lawyer can guide you through. The legal process in the Delaware workers’ compensation system includes:

  1. Requesting a hearing: You can request a hearing with the Office of Workers’ Compensation within 60 days of receiving the denial notice. A hearing will be scheduled before a hearing officer, who will review the evidence and hear testimony from both parties.
  2. Mediation: Before a hearing, you may be required to attend mediation with the insurance company to try and resolve the dispute. If an agreement is reached, the case will not proceed to a hearing.
  3. Hearing: If mediation does not result in a settlement, a hearing will be scheduled. At the hearing, both parties will have the opportunity to present evidence and arguments.
  4. Appeal: If you are dissatisfied with the hearing decision, you may appeal the decision to the Delaware Superior Court within 30 days of the decision. The appeal process is complex and usually requires the assistance of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.

It’s important to note that the appeals process can be lengthy and complicated. Your workers’ compensation attorneys will advocate for your rights at the appeal.

The Benefits of Hiring an Experienced Workers’ Comp Lawyer

Hiring an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer offers several key advantages to individuals who have suffered a workplace injury. Our attorneys will be able to handle all aspects of their case and your claim. Our law firm has the experience and knowledge of the Delaware workers’ compensation laws needed to successfully navigate the legal system on your behalf.

If your employer does not have workers’ comp insurance, that does not preclude an injured employee from seeking compensation for workplace injuries through a personal injury lawsuit. A civil lawsuit in civil court will protect your legal rights when an injury occurs or you suffer a work-related illness and will hold the business owner liable if you are hurt on the job.

Why Schmittinger & Rodriguez?

At Schmittinger & Rodriguez, we understand how difficult and stressful it can be to deal with a workers’ compensation case. Our team has decades of combined experience handling such cases, and we know how to effectively deal with the Delaware workers’ compensation laws to ensure that our clients get the compensation they deserve.

We will work diligently to ensure that the negligent party is held accountable for their actions by:

  • Investigating all details of the workplace injury including defective equipment, occupational safety, occupational disease, and how the work-related injury occurred.
  • Examining the relevant evidence
  • Obtaining all available records
  • Building a strong case through evidence gathered

We also have a deep understanding of all the legal issues and will provide dedicated legal representation throughout your case. Our experienced attorneys are committed to providing you with personalized attention and will fight hard to get you the best possible outcome for your case. If you or someone you love has been injured at work, contact Schmittinger & Rodriguez today so that we can help you obtain justice and fair compensation for your losses. Call us now at (302)-674-0140.

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