A lot of people think that when they settle their workers’ comp lawsuit, they get to keep all the money. They don’t realize that a lot of people have to be paid out of that lawsuit. You also may have to set aside a certain amount of money to cover liens held by insurance companies.
If you live in Georgia, when you first get hurt at work, you’ll file a workers’ compensation claim. Whether or not your claim is paid and approved depends on a few things. Generally speaking, if you meet the following criteria, you’ll receive workers’ comp benefits in Moultrie, Georgia:
- Your injury took place on company time
- You were doing something related to your job at the time of your injury
- Your injury wasn’t caused by something other than your job
- You weren’t under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of your accident
- Your injuries were reported to your employer
- You followed your company’s policy regarding work-related injuries
- You were treated by a company approved doctor
Now, just because you do meet these criteria doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily receive benefits. Your employer could have all sorts of reasons for denying your claim. This is why it’s important that you retain a workers’ comp attorney in Moultrie, Georgia right away.
Your attorney will make sure your claim is handled properly from the beginning. He’ll make sure your employer doesn’t deny you medical care. He’ll also make sure you aren’t forced to return to work before you’re fully healed.
How Much Will Your Settlement Be?
There’s no sure way to predict how much your workers’ comp settlement will be. It really depends on how bad your injuries are. It also depends on what body part was injured.
In workers’ comp, the amount you receive depends on how important the body part is that you injure. For example, you’re going to receive a lot more for a back injury than you will a wrist injury.
While on workers’ compensation, you’re going to get the same amount of weekly benefits no matter what part of your body is hurt. This changes when it comes to a settlement.
The weekly benefits you receive are based on a temporary partial disability. The expectation is that you’ll eventually return to work, sooner rather than later. The settlement you receive to close your case is based on permanent partial disability. The money is meant to compensate you for two things: the medical care you’ll need in the future and the earnings you’ll lose as a result of your injury.
Basically, your settlement amount is determined by how permanent your injuries are. Your Moultrie workers’ comp attorney will negotiate a number of weeks that they feel your injury will persist. This is then multiplied by your weekly benefit amount.
Here’s an example:
You injure your back. The doctors determine that you’re 50% permanently disabled. The body part chart may state that you’re entitled to 300 weeks of benefits to cover your long-term issues. Your weekly benefit amount is $500. Therefore, you’ll be entitled to $150,000.
How Is Your Settlement Money Broken Up?
The first thing you need to pay out of your settlement is your attorney’s fee. Most workers’ comp attorneys in Moultrie, Georgia will take about 33%. After your lawyer is paid, you’ll have to cover set asides that you need for future medical care. The reason you need to do this is in case you need more treatment related to your work injuries.
The second person you have to pay are medical providers. Any outstanding medical bills have to be paid. So do providers who treated you and were not reimbursed. If there are any Medicare or Medicaid liens against your case, they have to be paid.
So, let’s take our above example. Out of your $150,000, your attorney gets about $50,000. Let’s say you owe another $50,000 in medical bills that are left unpaid. This will leave you with about $50,000. This money, for the most part, will be yours to keep.
Contact a Moultrie Workers’ Comp Attorney Today
If you get hurt at work, you really should call a Moultrie workers’ comp attorney. He’ll make sure your claim is handled properly. He’ll also make sure you aren’t forced to work sooner than you should be.
Call and schedule your free initial consultation today. And remember – you pay nothing until you settle your case.