Riverside Workers’ Compensation Lawyers
If you suffered a job-related injury, contact the Riverside personal injury lawyers of OnderLaw, LLC today. You might be entitled to benefits through your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. They should cover your medical treatment and a portion of your lost income if your injury causes you to earn less than you made before the accident or prevents you from working entirely.
At OnderLaw, LLC, we put forth the same amount of effort in every case we take. Whether simple or complicated, we can handle the process and develop the right strategy to get you the money you’re owed. You should not be financially responsible for your expenses when your injury results from an accident at work.
Every employer in California must provide workers’ compensation coverage to their employees. Even if someone only has one employee, state law requires the employer to carry workers’ compensation insurance in case there’s an on-the-job injury or illness. OnderLaw, LLC can file a claim on your behalf and help you with the process of recovering the benefits you deserve. We also have extensive experience and knowledge in appealing denied claims and litigating cases in court.
Learn more about your options after a work-related accident by calling OnderLaw, LLC at (314) 963-9000 for a free consultation with one of our Riverside workers’ compensation lawyers.
What Is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation insurance replaces a portion of an injured worker’s lost wages and pays for medically necessary treatment. You qualify for benefits the second you sustain a job-related injury or illness. Even if you can continue working, you’re entitled to certain benefit payments after a workplace accident.
Injuries and illnesses can happen in any job industry. A range of scenarios can arise that lead to accidents. The most common are:
- Slips/trips and falls
- Walkway or working area hazards
- Negligent hiring practices
- Exposure to toxic substances
- Fires and explosions
- Unsecured falling objects
- Vehicle collisions
- Faulty equipment and machinery
- Lack of safety devices
- Repetitive motion and overexertion injuries
- Employee violence
- Unstable ladders, platforms, and other equipment used to work in high places
- Inadequate lighting
- Dangerous working conditions
Strict deadlines are in place for reporting workplace accidents and filing claims. If you don’t take immediate action, you could end up without the compensation you need to heal and afford your expenses. It’s critical that you begin the process as soon as possible, so you receive the benefits you deserve.
Who Qualifies for WC Benefits?
California follows a no-fault system when it comes to workers’ compensation insurance. That means you can seek benefits from your employer even if their actions didn’t cause your injury. As long as you were performing your work-related duties when the accident occurred, you could file a claim.
These specific conditions must exist when you suffer an injury or illness to qualify for coverage:
- You were in the course of your employment at the time of the accident.
- You didn’t intentionally cause yourself harm.
- Your job directly caused your injury.
- The injury didn’t result from being intoxicated by alcohol or a controlled substance.
- You weren’t voluntarily participating in a social, athletic, or recreational activity that didn’t require performing work-related duties.
- You didn’t get hurt while committing a felony or crime punishable by California Penal Code Section 17.
- You didn’t suffer injuries from initiating a physical altercation.
Additionally, surviving family members can pursue benefits if their loved one did not deliberately or willfully cause their own death in a workplace accident.
What Types of Benefits are Available?
Several types of coverage are available through workers’ compensation insurance.
Benefits for medical care pay for all reasonable treatment necessary to relieve or cure a job-related illness or injury. You must see specifically approved physicians if your employer belongs to a health care organization or medical provider network. You can only visit a doctor of your own choice if you predesignated your medical provider or facility before the accident. If you decide to treat with an unapproved physician, you will likely have to pay out of pocket for those appointments.
Temporary Disability Benefits
Temporary disability benefits are available if you can’t perform your usual job and lose wages as a result. Payments start if you need overnight hospitalization after the job-related injury or illness or your doctor informs you that you’ll be off work for longer than three days and can’t perform your usual job for that period of time. Coverage usually ends if:
- Your doctor releases you back to work;
- You return to your job; or
- Your physician informs you that your injury improved as much as possible.
Payments are two-thirds of the gross average weekly wage you lose while treating your work-related injury or illness. Maximum weekly limits are in place that you can’t exceed while collecting benefits.
You should report all sources of income you lose due to the workplace accident, such as wages, tips, overtime, commissions, lodging, food, and bonuses.
Permanent Disability Benefits
Permanent disability benefits cover any lasting disability suffered in a workplace accident that affects your ability to earn a living. Payment amounts depend on the date of the accident, average wages made before the accident, and the impairment level provided by your doctor.
An impairment level is a percentage indicating how much an injury or illness affects a person’s body as a whole. This impairment rating is typically assigned after a medical provider places their patient at maximum medical improvement. That means the condition isn’t likely to improve with further treatment.
If your physician determines you have a permanent injury, payments should begin within fourteen days after temporary disability benefits end.
Supplemental Job Displacement Benefits
You can receive compensation for training, certification, and testing necessary to find another job with supplemental job displacement benefits. When you apply, you will receive a non-transferrable voucher you can use to pay for expenses, such as:
- Testing or certification fees
- Tools necessary to take a training course
- Cost of computer equipment up to $1,000
- Up to $600 for job placement services
- Miscellaneous expenses up to $500
If your family member suffered a fatal job-related injury or illness, you could seek death benefits. Only surviving spouses, children, and dependents qualify for coverage. You can receive compensation up to $5,000 for burial costs and replace a portion of your loved one’s lost wages due to their death.
Steps to Take if You’ve Been Injured at Work
The first thing you should do after a work-related injury or illness is seek medical treatment. Don’t wait long before your first appointment. Go to a hospital or doctor in your employer’s health care organization or medical provider network immediately after leaving the accident scene.
You must report the accident to your employer within thirty days. If you don’t inform your employer of your injury within this timeframe, you could lose your right to pursue benefits.
You should also hire a lawyer to assist you with your case. Filing a workers’ compensation claim can be confusing and complicated. There are multiple steps to follow, strict deadlines to meet, and evidence to collect. If you don’t know how to request copies of your medical records or how much time you have to file a claim, you could end up without the compensation you need to cover your expenses.
OnderLaw, LLC can take on the responsibility of your case so you can focus on recovering. Even though we have the resources to obtain the evidence we need to prove you were injured at work, you should also maintain any documents you receive related to the accident. That might include physician bills, surgical reports, imaging test results, and physical therapy notes.
Workplace Injury Statistics
In 2019, private industry incidents occurred at a rate of 2.8 cases per 100 full-time employees. The highest rates of nonfatal illnesses and injuries happened in motor vehicle body and trailer manufacturing. The occupations with incidents requiring the most days away from work included:
- Nursing assistants
- Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers
- Laborers and freight, stock and material movers
- Light truck drivers
- Construction laborers
- Maintenance and repair workers
- Stockers and order fillers
- Janitors and cleaners, excluding housekeeping cleaners and maids
- Registered nurses
- Retail salespersons
The most common injuries were:
- Sprains, strains, and tears – 295,180 nonfatal injuries
- Soreness, pain – 157, 440 nonfatal injuries
- Bruises, contusions – 80,640 nonfatal injuries
- Cuts, lacerations, punctures – 89,730 nonfatal injuries
- Fractures – 85,710
The three main causes of job-related injuries are slip, trip and fall, overexertion and bodily reaction, and contact with equipment and objects. They represent over 84 percent of all nonfatal occupational injuries requiring days off from work.
The most common causes of fatal work injuries in 2019 were:
- Transportation incidents – 2,122 cases
- Falls, slips, trips – 880 fatal injuries
- Exposure to harmful environments or substances – 642 deaths
- Explosions and fires – 99 fatalities
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
Although a workers’ compensation claim might seem easy to handle without a lawyer, you could benefit greatly from seeking representation. When you are injured, in pain, and struggling to afford the costs associated with the workplace accident, the last thing you probably want to deal with is a case. You don’t have the time or energy to spend on gathering evidence and completing all the necessary paperwork. OnderLaw, LLC can handle everything for you so you can focus on healing your injury.
We know you might face financial strain since you’re out of work and can’t afford your medical bills and other expenses. We take cases on contingency, so we don’t add to your economic burden. You don’t have to pay our legal fees and costs unless we secure your workers’ compensation benefits. If we lose your case, you will never have to pay us.
How OnderLaw, LLC Could Help
The Riverside workers’ compensation lawyers of OnderLaw, LLC are available 24/7 to take your call. We will fight by your side from the beginning to the end of the process. You will not be alone while we’re working on your case and pursuing the benefits you need to cover your lost income and medical care. We will treat you as a priority and provide the one-on-one attention you deserve.
OnderLaw, LLC for a free consultation at (314) 963-9000 if you suffered an injury or illness at work.