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Workers' Compensation Blogs

What Is Covered - Workers' Compensation Attorney

One of the most frequent questions that we get about workers compensation has to do with what is and what is not covered. While these questions are often difficult to answer due to the case by case basis that we often see with workers compensation, there are a few things that don't change. As with any set of laws, there are certain aspects that are heavily established. in North Carolina state law mandates that ensures certain things are covered. These are the things that we will be going over so that you have a brief overview just in case you ever need it.

When it comes to workers compensation, you are not immediately compensated for the first week that you find yourself unable to work. You begin to get the compensation payments in the second week of your injury related absence, however if you are out for a full month then you do also get reimbursed for the first week that your injury caused you to miss. However, this compensation is not your full wage. It is only 66 2/3% of your weekly wage that you can claim through workers compensation with a maximum per week that cannot be exceeded. This changes yearly, however for 2021 that number is $1,102.00. This means that the absolute maximum that you can collect per month just in lost wages is $4,408. This isn’t everything that you are entitled to, however.

With workers compensation, you may also be reimbursed partly for some travel expenses. This means you should always keep a record of how far you travel for medical visits and when. These amounts will depend on the year that the travel occurred in. This is in addition to the compensation you are entitled to regarding the actual medical treatment that you receive connected to your work-related injury.

When it comes to workers compensation, there are a lot of things that can be up for debate. Compensation will be different for every person because no two cases are the same. This is why having an attorney on your side is so incredibly important. Give Collier Law a call as soon as a work-related injury occurs to file a workers compensation claim with the North Carolina Industrial Commission. This will make sure that you get the help that you deserve. We promise that we will fight until you get the compensation you are owed!

What If It Were My Fault - Workers' Compensation Attorney

Suffering an injury often carries a sense of guilt for one reason or another. People often blame themselves when they get hurt for not paying more attention to their surroundings or for no longer being able to provide financially for their families the way they had been. These feelings are often made more intense by the rhetoric that we often hear about people not actively working. What we want you to know is that if you are no longer able to work due to an injury, you should not feel like you are to blame. In fact, we believe the exact opposite.

Workers compensation in North Carolina is what is known as a “no-fault law”. This means that regardless of who may be “responsible” for the injury, you are normally still eligible for compensation. Accidents happen all the time, and they don’t necessarily have to be caused by the actions of any one person. How many times have you opened your closet at home only to have something fall out? While it is a distinct possibility that someone put the item too close to the edge of the shelf, it may also simply be the result of constant movements that caused it to fall. We don’t blame ourselves when a bottle of shampoo falls in a wet shower, so if something randomly falls at work why should it be any different?

The way North Carolina workers compensation law is written, you can file a claim as long as the incident was an accident. If it was clearly caused by negligence of one party or another, that falls into a different category. There are still options for you if this is what happened, but it most likely will not be handled as a workers compensation case. Unless you blatantly caused the injury by being careless or by ignoring orders, you have at least a chance of getting some form of compensation.

Regardless of who may have been at fault, you should contact Collier Law if you have been hurt at work. You will get a free consultation for your case and a legal team that will fight to make sure you get the compensation that you deserve. We understand that accidents happen and want to do everything we can to make sure that you aren’t left without means to care for yourself and your family. Give us a call today!

Chronic Pain and Workers' Compensation - Workers' Compensation Attorney

Periodically, we get a case that is extremely complicated. While these cases may be more intensive for any number of reasons, one subject that we are called for is cases involving chronic issues. When we use the term “chronic conditions”, we are most often referring to ones that cause pain. This means disorders such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, lupus, and other ones that are frequently difficult to treat under the best of circumstances. These tend to complicate workers compensation claims because insurance companies that are arguing against you will bring up these conditions in an attempt to convince anyone to rule against you. It is easier for them to write something off as a bad flair up, regardless of whether or not it is consistent with your symptoms.

Due to the fact that each chronic condition is different and each person deals with their diagnosis in their own way, arguing a chronic condition claim can be extremely difficult. Luckily, if you have a chronic health condition you probably have an extensive medical history in regards to what treatments you have gone through and what you have dealt with through the years. Some doctors even request that patients who have particularly bad cases keep a pain journal. If this is the case, you should have a fairly good record of your pain before and after the injury. While this isn’t going to be the most objective piece of evidence due to the extremely personal nature, it can certainly help your case. After all, it’s extremely unlikely that you wrote up years worth of journals understating your pain just so you could fake a workers compensation injury in the future.

Being hurt when you already have a chronic disorder can really set you back. Often, injuries like these can mess with your mental health as well. This means that you may be struggling even more than usual and should have someone on your side who can help fight on your behalf. If you have a chronic condition and have been hurt at work, call Collier Law today for your free consultation. We will do everything we can to get you the compensation you deserve, so that you can get the treatment that you need. We know how difficult it can be to keep fighting, but don't let your pain hold you back. Let us help you with this new injury!

Electrical Injuries - Workers' Compensation Attorney

If you have ever touched a piece of metal and received a good shock, you know that static electricity is not something you want to have a lot of exposure to. Just that small amount of voltage can be enough to give you a surprise, and it isn’t very powerful at all. While there are stories of people surviving shocks of all different levels, like those who have been struck by lightning, you always want to do your best to avoid electricity, because for every one of those stories, there are at least three others of someone who didn’t walk away at all.

Electrocutions are considered one of the “Fatal Four” top causes of injuries and deaths that occur most frequently in construction work. Considering that around twenty percent of all workplace deaths occur in the construction industry, it really makes you think about the scope of this issue. The problem with electricity is that just about every place you can work has it, and so every job has the potential for deadly contact.

Over the years, there have been innumerable injuries caused by electrocution. Now, you often hear about these deaths and how they are leaving behind families and friends who relied on them. These deaths are always sad and don’t only happen to new workers. In fact, many of the deaths are from people who have been in the construction industry for years, but were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. When someone is killed on the job, especially by electrocution, it is always a tragedy. The worst part is that these deaths likely could have been avoided with more care, awareness, and better materials.

OSHA lists the three most common causes of electrocution on the job as: contact with overhead power lines (the voltage can range anywhere from 120 volts to 750,000 volts), contact with energized sources (like bare wires), and improper use of flexible/extension cords. With the voltage range that wide, it is always best to act as if any wire is live until you have the official word that all power has been cut. Even then, you should still act with caution.

If you or a loved one has suffered an electrical injury while on the job, call Collier today for a free consultation. These injuries are serious, and we want to make sure you get the proper care from the first possible moment!

Romance and Workers Compensation - Workers' Compensation Attorney

February always brings up the idea and thought of love. While most work places won't see Valentine's Day celebrated beyond a few decorations, there are always exceptions. Most employment offices have a rule against relationships in the workplace, or at least illicit ones. Many companies require you to officially disclose the fact that you are dating a coworker, and they may decide to put you on different shifts or some other method of making sure that you aren't around each other on the clock. Regardless of the rules in a company, relationships still happen. Unfortunately, they don’t always have a happy ending. Such a case was seen a little over six years ago in England.

On December 8, 2014, the employees of the London Zoo were having their annual Christmas party when two women got into an altercation over a man they worked with. The argument began after Ms. Kate Sanders made a remark about Ms. Caroline Westlake’s appearance to some friends while she was in the bathroom. They ran into one another in the coatroom, and it was at that time that Ms. Sanders attempted to apologize. This, by all appearances, was a simple drunken spat. That is, at least, until it came out that Sanders was dating the llama keeper Adam Davies, who happened to be Ms. Westlake's ex. Sanders, the monkey handler, received three stitches on her face after Westlake, who was in charge of the meerkats, cut her face with a broken wine glass.

While Ms. Westlake was eventually acquitted, she had initially been found guilty of assault. She was also fired as a direct result of the incident. Due to the fact that this occurred at a work party, there was some question about whether or not it could have been considered a workers compensation claim. The question comes down to whether or not the party was mandatory, which would mean neither women had a choice in attending a location that included the both of them.

Regardless of the reason for the injury, if you have suffered from one while on the job or at a mandatory work function, call Collier Law Firm today for your free consultation. We will do all we can to make sure that you get the compensation that you deserve, regardless of any romantic entanglements that are included in the case. Make sure to keep your Valentine's Day at work, work-related!