Workers Compensation Attorneys

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Workers Compensation Lawyers

If you have suffered a serious injury on the job, the Richmond workers compensation attorneys at Epperly & Follis, P.C. want you to call them. The Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act states injured employees do not have to prove any person was at fault or prove negligence of the employer to obtain compensation for injuries that happen on the clock.

photo from a workmans compensation attorney showing a woman who injured her knee

It is extremely important for employees to be aware of how employers (and their insurance companies) will try to minimize their losses when an employee is injured. Most companies will do anything they can to save money on your claim.

In addition, many workers wait too long to tell their employer about their injury. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your claim, you may have as little as 30 days from the time of the injury to notify your employer of your injuries. This is why it is important to obtain legal representation as soon as possible.

If you have been injured at work, you should immediately contact the attorneys at Epperly & Follis, P.C so you can be assured you are receiving all the benefits available to you.

Our experienced workers’ compensation disability attorneys are ready to serve you. Our team of legal professionals does not approach its cases as mere jobs, but as causes in which larger issues are at stake – causes in which the firm’s lawyers invest personal dedication to see that justice is done.

Common Causes of Workplace Injuries

man who injured his shoulder at workSlip and fall accidents are common at work. It is easy to trip over a box sitting in the middle of the floor, or to slip on wet floors on a rainy morning.

Carpel tunnel syndrome is a common issue for people who are typing at their computers all day long.

Auto accidents while working on the clock is another common claim. The morning and evening commute is not considered a workplace injury, but those who are injured in car accidents while driving for work related tasks are likely eligible for worker’s compensation.

Overexertion is another one of the most common work injuries. Knee injuries often result from too much walking, lifting, pushing, and other activities in the workplace. Even if it seems like a minor injury, it might not be. You should still report the injury to your manager. In rare instances, several days or weeks may pass before the symptoms of your injury appear.

What To Do After an Injury at Work

  1. Immediately visit your primary care physician. Head straight to the hospital or call 911 if it is an emergency
  2. Give a written notice of your medical treatment to your supervisor or other responsible party as soon as possible
  3. Even if it seems like a minor injury, it might not be. You should still report the injury to your manager. In rare instances, several days or weeks may pass before the symptoms of your injury appear.

Is It Covered Under the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act

Sometimes, there are situations where it is not clear if you have a workman’s comp. claim. The accident must:

  • Occur at work
  • Happen at a specific moment in time
  • Be identified by a specific activity at work

Some medical conditions can be covered too, especially if the ailment is caused by work activities, and it is not related to the spinal column, the neck, or the back.

How You Are Reimbursed

Workers’ compensation is insurance paid for by employers that provides cash benefits and medical care if an employee becomes disabled because of workplace injuries, regardless of fault. Workers’ compensation benefits entitle you to medical treatment to cure and relieve the effects of your industrial injury. Treatment may include consultations, physical therapy, surgery, hospitalization, drug treatment, nursing care, as well as physical and vocational rehabilitation services. You are entitled to be reimbursed for costs of mileage going to and from your medical appointments. The injured employee may also be entitled to lost wages.

It is important that you are aware of the following:

  • Insurance Company Doctors
    Your employer may tell you to visit an insurance company doctor to get a “second opinion.” You should consult your lawyer before going to an insurance company doctor.
  • The term “reasonable medical care”
    “Reasonable medical care” includes, but is not limited to, surgery, special treatments, medications or physical therapy. If you refuse recommended treatment, your employer has the right to petition to have your benefits suspended.
  • The No Discrimination Rule
    No one can penalize you for filing a workers’ compensation claim if you have a work-related injury, illness or disease. If you feel that you have been discriminated against because of a worker’s compensation claim, contact Epperly & Follis, P.C immediately.
  • Retirement
    Retirement benefits should not affect the amount you receive under workers’ compensation. Sometimes, however, there are instances where an unsuspecting worker gets benefits reduced upon retirement. Know the details of your pension agreement so that you don’t lose all that is coming to you.

Workplace Injuries vs. Accident Cases

employee completing a work injury claim formThere is a critical difference between workplace injuries and other accident cases. Accident cases are governed by the tort laws. “Tort” means civil wrong, as opposed to criminal wrong. When a person commits a civil wrong he is obliged to pay civil damages to the person or persons injured by his act. Tort cases are based on a fault system. If an injured person can prove that some other person was at fault, that the fault caused an accident, and that the accident caused him an injury, then he is entitled to recover his full measure of damages.

The full measure of damages for a tort includes an allowance for pain and suffering and loss of life’s pleasures. These are often called “general damages.” It also includes compensation for all out-of-pocket losses such as medical bills, property damage, and lost wages.

There are two problems with applying the fault-based system to workplace injuries: First, many industrial accidents happen without the fault of the employer. In those cases, the injured worker is left with nothing but the workers compensation system. Second, in order to prove fault, you need evidence. Evidence of fault usually consists of testimony by witnesses to the accident. In many cases the only witnesses to on-the-job accidents are other employees.  Workers compensaton was implemented to protect workers from injuries regardless of fault, but in return workers gave up the right of collecting for pain and suffering from their employer.  Because of the complexity of workers compensation laws and the exceptions that exist it is wise to seek the advise of an attorney.

Call Us Even If You Are Receiving Compensation

If you have been injured while on the job, contact Epperly & Follis, P.C. Even if you are already receiving benefits, it may be to your advantage to consult an experienced attorney to ensure that you are receiving the maximum benefits available under the law.

Epperly & Follis, P.C. is a law firm focusing on catastrophic personal injury cases against major defendants such as nursing homes, hospitals, insurance companies, product manufacturers, corporations and municipalities. If you feel that you have the basis for workplace injuries suit, it is important to contact an attorney immediately. The workers’ compensation law firm of Epperly & Follis in Richmond, Virginia will outline the documentation required, the decisions that must be made, and will continue to guide you through the legal process. Call us today at 1-888-703-0109 or (804) 648-6480, or contact us via our online Contact Form.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most common work injuries claims?

Some of the most common work injuries involve:

  • Employee death
  • Head injuries
  • Brain injuries
  • Skin disease
  • Neck Injuries
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Lung disorders
  • Asbestos
  • Lung Cancer
  • Mesothelioma
How am I paid when temporarily unable to return to work?

If you are temporarily totally disabled, without interruption for more than seven days from an on the job injury, weekly benefits should be paid to you at the rate of 66 2/3 percent of your average weekly wage.

Do I need an attorney to represent me if I am injured on the job?

You have the right to be represented by an attorney concerning your work-related injury. Your Epperly & Follis, P.C. attorney will assist you in seeing that your benefits are properly protected. Your employer or your employer’s insurance company will be advised and represented by individuals experienced in Workers’ Compensation cases and you should have an attorney experienced in handling Workers’ Compensation representing you. Contact us online today.

What is repetitive stress injury?

Repetitive stress injury is the name given to a group of conditions that are caused when too much stress is placed on a joint. Repetitive stress injury happens when the same action is performed repeatedly. Performing the same action over and over can cause pain and swelling in the muscles and tendons. The two most common types of repetitive stress injury are tendinitis and bursitis.

What is a third party lawsuit?

Third-party lawsuits involve another party, other than the employer. For example, if you are injured by a saw, there may be a product liability case against the manufacturer of the saw. In addition, if a worker was injured on a construction site, another contractor could be liable. These cases require immediate attention and expertise of an attorney because the responsible third party is often difficult to locate and the evidence may need to be preserved.

What benefits am I entitled to under workers' compensation law?

The benefits under Workers’ Compensation include weekly payments based on a percentage of the employee’s average weekly wage. These payments cover temporary total disability, partial disability, permanent and total disability, and permanent loss of function and disfigurement. Other benefits include:

  • Medical bills
  • Vocational rehabilitation/training
  • Death benefits
  • Lost wages
Are there any laws governing work injuries?

Workers’ Compensation law provides benefits to workers who are injured on the job or who suffer an occupational disease arising out of and in the course of employment. The problem with Workers’ Compensation benefits is that the compensation is often not sufficient to address the extent of the injuries. In this situation, an attorney can advise you on how to obtain the compensation you need to cover your medical costs.

What should I do if I suffer a workplace injury?

Those who suffer work related injuries should report them as soon as possible to their employer using the proper forms. A physician should also investigate work-related injuries. Evidence of work related injuries allows the victim to qualify for worker’s compensation and associated benefits. In addition, you may wish to pursue your legal rights with an experienced workplace injury attorney at Epperly & Follis, P.C.

My spouse was killed on the job. Is that a workers' compensation claim or a wrongful death claim?

This would likely fall under workers’ compensation laws, as the benefits paid would be from the worker’s compensation insurance afforded by your spouse’s employer. Contact Epperly & Follis, P.C. to discuss the specific facts of your case.

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We know the law, we know victims’ rights, and we want to help you make informed decisions about your personal injury case. Please contact Epperly & Follis, P.C today for a free legal consultation.

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