Workers Comp: Protecting the Rights of the Injured
There was a long period in American history where workers really didn’t have many rights. They could be worked for far more than eight hours a day and, if they were injured, could simply be sent upon their way and easily replaced. Luckily, this isn’t really the case anymore. A variety of labor and worker protection laws have went into effect over the past century that are meant to help American workers. One of the most legally beneficial developments was worker’s compensation benefits, so it’s imperative for every employee to understand these laws.
What is Worker’s Compensation?
Worker’s compensation is a form of insurance that many American companies have to carry if they employ a certain amount of workers. This insurance is to cover injuries to employees that occur during the course of their work. The great part about these laws is the fact that the policies cover workers regardless of whether the injury was due to the negligence of a coworker, the owner or the employee themselves.
In most cases, a worker isn’t allowed to sue their employer for injuries. This is the caveat of worker’s comp laws. This prevents the courts from being bogged down with work-related injury cases while also ensuring that workers who are injured on the job receive compensation for lost time at work, medical bills and other benefits related to the injury. Sadly, even though the worker gives up their right to sue in most cases, there’s still a chance that they can be denied.
Can a Worker be Denied?
There are a variety of reasons that a worker’s compensation claim may be denied. These reasons can include the fact that no medical treatment was necessary, no time off of work was necessary or that the injury didn’t actually happen while a person was at work or engaged in activities related to their employment. These are all legitimate reasons for a denial, but sadly, denials can still happen in the absence of these factors.
Just like in any other situation where an insurance company and adjuster are involved, paying out benefits will cost the company money. This leads some adjusters to deny claims that they know are legitimate, also known as engaging in bad faith practices, in an effort to cut down costs for the company. Some insurers, such as Liberty Mutual, have become infamous for these types of denials. It is not uncommon to read about a workers compensation bad faith dispute with Liberty Mutual. It only takes a quick Internet search to find several cases of individuals who were wrongfully denied benefits by the company.
Unfair Worker’s Comp Denials
Luckily, a denial from a worker’s compensation insurer or even an employer dispute isn’t the final word on the matter. There is an appeals process, but once a claim has been denied, it’s usually essential for an individual to seek out an attorney for help. In instances where a worker feels that the insurer has purposefully denied a rightful claim, however, it’s important to find a worker’s compensation bad faith lawyer. In fact, bad faith may even be occurring if it seems as if the insurer is dragging their feet and delaying a claim.
Bad faith isn’t something that an insurer can simply try out in an effort to save money. These practices are literally against the law, and if an attorney can prove that an insurer engaged in these patterns of activity against an injured worker, they can often help recover far more substantial compensation. Insurance companies who engage in bad faith practices often have to pay out huge settlements due to their dishonest and illegal practices.
Worker’s compensation laws were essential in protecting American workers, but it didn’t take long for insurers to start trying to work the system in their favor. Luckily, legal professionals are adept at catching these immoral practices and making sure insurers pay for them. It’s important to remember that these companies will continue to engage in these behaviors until they’re stopped, and bringing forth legal action is the only way to do so.
Lisa Coleman shares some information about what bad faith practices are and how this can impact the rights of an individual injured while working on the job. She recently read about a workers compensation bad faith dispute with Liberty Mutual online at the website of Doyle Raizner LLP, an experienced worker’s comp denial attorney.
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/78428166@N00/9127644174/
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