A serious injury can affect every area of your life, from your ability to work to your interactions with loved ones. If you have suffered a serious injury while at work, you likely have cause to pursue a workers’ compensation claim. In fact, Missouri law requires that most employers carry workers’ compensation insurance to financially assist employees when they are hurt on the job.
Workers’ comp settlement amounts can vary widely from case to case. The trusted attorneys at OnderLaw can handle every stage of your workers’ compensation case, from filing the initial claim to aggressively negotiating with the insurance carrier to get the maximum amount of benefits available.
What Determines Your Workers’ Comp Settlement Amount?
When you are injured at work, you may be entitled to multiple types of workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to cover the costs of your covered medical treatment for a job-related injury, and it can also pay for a certain percentage of your lost income. There is not really an “average” workers’ compensation settlement amount, since each claim depends on multiple factors specific to each case. Regardless of how much money is allocated for a workers’ comp settlement, it is typically distributed on a lump-sum basis.
If you are seriously injured, never accept a settlement from the workers’ compensation insurance company before you speak with a lawyer. Insurance carriers will often try to get injured workers to settle for less than they are entitled to receive too soon after the injury. If you accept the first settlement offer you receive, you could end up closing out the case before you have realized the full dollar value of the losses from your injuries.
Depending on the nature of your injuries, you could be entitled to temporary or permanent disability benefits. For example, temporary total disability benefits can pay for 66 2/3 percent of your pre-tax weekly wages if your injury prevents you from working at your current job for an interim period following the incident.
Should your injury leave you permanently unable to perform certain job tasks, you could receive permanent partial disability benefits or even permanent total disability benefits if you’re unable to work at all after the incident. Either type of permanent disability benefit is based on 66 2/3 percent of your average weekly earnings, subject to certain caps set by state law.
So, the severity of your injuries and the degree to which they prevent you from working on a short- or long-term basis will be a key determinant of your potential workers’ compensation settlement amount. The duration and cost of your required medical treatment, therapy, as well as any ongoing medical expenses associated with your injury will also impact that final figure.
Additionally, actions by your employer and the insurance company could impact your settlement. For example, if your employer tries to keep you from filing a claim or disputes your claim, this could affect your journey to settlement.
What to Consider Before You Settle a Workers’ Comp Case
There are many points to consider before you settle a workers’ comp claim. These include any future medical treatment you may require, how any settlement may impact your employment situation, and the impact of your injuries on your earning ability.
If you are still undergoing treatment and your doctor has not yet said that you are at maximum medical improvement (MMI)—which is the point at which medical care will no longer improve your situation—it may be too early to settle. You should also consider whether that settlement includes the full value of the time you have missed from work and your outstanding medical bills.
If you are thinking about settling your workers’ comp case or wonder what amount you might be entitled to, you should consult with a lawyer before taking decisive action. Our legal team at OnderLaw can calculate your damages and collect evidence to build a strong claim for settlement. We can represent your interests with the insurance company in a negotiation as well as provide the vigilant advocacy you need in the courtroom.
Discuss Your Case With an Experienced Workers’ Comp Attorney
No two workers’ compensation claims are exactly the same. The average workers’ comp settlement amount you may be entitled to receive depends on your claim. Even one missed deadline or a piece of missing information in your claim could derail your case for workers’ compensation benefits.
It also doesn’t help that workers’ compensation insurance companies are notorious for using every trick in the book to try to devalue or deny claims. The attorneys at OnderLaw know this playbook all too well and how to cut through these tactics to get you the payout you deserve.
If you are dealing with a work injury, we can oversee your case from start to finish. Let us fight for you. Contact OnderLaw today to receive your free, one-on-one legal consultation with a reliable workers’ compensation lawyer.