Nothing can prepare you to deal with the overwhelming consequences of an on-the-job accident. Unfortunately, mishaps do happen. In the state of Virginia, all employers across all industries are required to have workers’ compensation insurance. In return, they have the immunity, where an injured worker cannot sue them directly for the accident. Consulting a workers’ comp attorney Virginia can benefit your case. Lawyers know what it takes to negotiate and can handle the complicated claims process for you. In addition to that, here are some mistakes that you need to avoid.
- Signing a general release. Insurance companies will want you to sign a general release so that they can have access to your prior medical records. The information could be used to argue that you had pre-existing health conditions and that your injuries are not related to the reported accident. Do not sign anything before you talk to an attorney.
- Believing things that the insurance company says. If you are not under an Award for benefits, the insurance company can terminate benefits, and you may not understand the complications. All workers’ compensation adjusters are professionals and are trained to say nice things to get information. Don’t believe what they say, and it’s best to let your lawyer do the talking for you.
- Not looking for a job. If your doctor says that you can work and earn in some capacity and you are not under an Award yet, you should continue looking for a job. This is true even for cases where the doctor believes that the injured worker can work, although the worker may not think so. Taking up a job is always helpful in such circumstances.
- Missing vocational rehabilitation meetings. If your doctor says that you have the capacity to work to an extent, you should use that time. When you have been assigned to vocational rehabilitation, you must attend the meetings and must cooperate with the vocational counselor to the best possible extent. The vocational counselor has the power to get your benefits terminated by telling the insurance company that you have been uncooperative.
The workers’ compensation system in Virginia is simple, but dealing with a claim can be complex. Talk to an attorney soon after the accident to know what you are entitled to. If your claim has been denied, your lawyer can review things again. Also, you need an attorney when you have been wrongfully terminated from the job for filing a workers’ compensation claim.