Experienced and Successful Alabama Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If your boss has five or more employees – even part-time – then your workplace should be covered by workers’ compensation insurance. This means that if you are injured on the job, you can get your medical bills paid for and also receive monetary benefits to replace your wages while you are disabled from working or assigned to light duty. For the most part, you cannot sue your employer for negligence but must instead rely exclusively on workers’ compensation for an on-the-job injury. Navigating the Alabama workers’ compensation system and having your claim accepted often requires the assistance of an experienced workers’ comp attorney. At the Law Office of Gary W. Fillingim, L.L.C., you will find a dedicated personal injury attorney with over twenty years of experience helping injured workers in Mobile obtain their much-needed workers’ compensation benefits.
Important Facts about Alabama Workers’ Compensation
Filing a workers’ compensation claim means that you may receive compensation for your workplace injury without having to find and sue a responsible party, with all the time, expense and uncertainty of a civil trial. Instead, compensation should be quick and assured, without regard to fault. Unfortunately, getting benefits oftentimes can be anything but swift or certain. Besides simply getting lost in the system and not understanding how to work through a complicated state bureaucracy, there are in fact many ways your company or their insurance carrier may dispute or deny your claim for benefits. Some of the most common ways include alleging any of the following:
- Your medical bills are not associated with a work injury
- Your injury is false, exaggerated or due to a preexisting condition
- You did not suffer from an “accident” within the strict meaning of Alabama Workers’ Compensation law
- The accident was not work-related
- You did not give the proper notice to your employer as required by law
- The accident was the result of your own willful misconduct
- Your injury was caused by a co-worker or third party for personal reasons not related to employment
- You intentionally brought about the injury upon yourself
- The accident was the result of your own intoxication by alcohol or drugs
- You failed or willfully refused to use safety appliances
- You willfully refused or neglected to perform a statutory duty
- You willfully breached a reasonable workplace rule or regulation
When claims like these are lodged against you, Mobile workers’ compensation attorney Gary Fillingim stands up to employers and their insurance carriers. With thorough investigation, effective advocacy and a full knowledge of Alabama workers’ compensation law, we will fight to see that your claim is not unfairly denied, disputed or delayed. Without an experienced attorney on your side, you may easily find your claim denied, or that you have trouble receiving your full benefits in a timely manner.
Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Alabama
Alabama workers’ compensation pays many different types of benefits to injured workers and their families. The most common types of benefits include:
- Medical Benefits– Workers’ Compensation pays all reasonably necessary doctor bills and medical expenses related to the injury, including surgery, treatment, medicine and supplies
- Wage Replacement Benefits – Injured workers receive two-thirds of their average weekly salary, subject to minimum and maximum amounts established in the law
- Death Benefits – When a worker dies from a workplace accident, the estate of the deceased receives benefits in the amount of one-half of the worker’s average weekly wages, if there is one surviving dependent, or two-thirds the average weekly wage for two or more dependents. If there was no dependent, the estate receives a $7,500 lump sum payment. Death benefits also include up to $6,500 in burial expenses.
Benefits can last up to 300 weeks or for an unlimited duration, depending upon whether the injury is partial or total and temporary or permanent. Death benefits may last up to 500 weeks.
What to do if You are Injured on the Job
Notify your employer as soon as possible. You should report any workplace accident or injury to your supervisor or boss immediately, even if you don’t think medical attention will be required. By law, this notice should occur within five days of the accident, or at the most within 90 days to protect your right to workers’ compensation. Your employer or their workers’ comp insurance carrier will direct you on where to go to receive medical treatment.
Mistakes to Avoid When Injured at Work
There are a number of mistakes you should avoid when injured on the job. The first and most common mistake made in these situations is failing to report an accident immediately. As any lawyer in Mobile, AL, will tell you, reporting these incidents promptly is essential in winning a worker’s compensation case. Another mistake to avoid is trying to handle these situations without the help of worker’s compensation attorneys. Our worker’s compensation lawyers have helped a number of people get the money they need to cover medicals bills and to compensate pain and suffering following an on-the-job accident.
Your next step should be to contact an experienced Alabama workers’ compensation attorney for help submitting your claim, to walk you through the process and answer your questions, and to represent you in the event your claim is denied or not handled appropriately. In Mobile, call the Law Office of Gary W. Fillingim, L.L.C. at 251-445-7257. Your consultation is free, and you owe us nothing if we cannot obtain benefits for you.