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Workers’ Compensation

Making A Difference For Injured Workers In North Carolina

If you have been hurt while performing your job, you probably have a valid workers’ compensation insurance claim — and it may be important to take other legal action as well. We know this can be intimidating when you must also focus on dealing with your pain, medical care, and uncertainty about your income.

Helping workplace injury victims is a major focus at our law firm. Our principal attorney Christina Rivenbark & Associates has made winning maximum compensation for construction workers, factory workers and other hardworking people a priority for more than 30 years. For personal attention to your needs, please call or email us now. We will evaluate your case for free, charging no attorney fees unless you receive benefits.

Why Should I Hire A Wilmington Workers’ Compensation Lawyer?

You might think that your workers’ compensation claim will be a straightforward process. Still, the reality is that many injured workers in North Carolina encounter significant challenges as they strive to obtain the benefits they need after workplace injuries. An experienced Wilmington workers’ compensation attorney can make your claim process much easier and significantly improve your chances of success with your claim. In addition, if any issues arise during the claim process, or if you encounter unexpected resistance from an employer or an insurance company, your attorney can assist with these issues as well.

Many injured workers may also have grounds for legal action outside of the workers’ compensation system. While North Carolina law generally prohibits injured workers from suing their employers for workplace injuries, you may have grounds for a personal injury claim against a third party responsible for your injury. For the best chance of obtaining your workers’ compensation benefits as quickly as possible after a workplace injury, it’s vital to secure legal counsel from an experienced Wilmington workers’ compensation lawyer as soon as possible.

Our experienced workers’ compensation attorneys can help you answer frequently asked comp questions like:

  • Are my wage benefits calculated correctly?
  • What’s the time frame for reporting my injury to the employer and the Industrial Commission (IC)?
  • How do I report a claim to my employer?
  • What benefits am I entitled to in an accepted claim (medical, wages, etc.)?
  • Am I eligible for total temporary disability (TTD) payments?

It’s natural to feel desperate and uncertain after a workplace injury, especially if you contend with expensive medical bills and lost wages due to your inability to work. However, workers’ compensation exists to provide an invaluable lifeline to workers injured on the job. We can help you take full advantage of the benefits available to you after your injury.

Personal Attention From An Experienced Lawyer For Workers

Whatever your employer or a human resources representative may tell you, having our experienced attorney on your side can make a real difference when you have a workers’ compensation claim. The reasons include:

  • Although you are not suing anyone when you file a work comp claim, you could encounter a claim denial, insistence that you return to work too soon, or problems with denied or delayed benefits.
  • Whether your skills are in construction, manufacturing, transportation, or some other area other than office work, you can trust our legal team to explain the process clearly and handle forms, any hearings, and required interactions with your doctors.
  • We may be able to help you get benefits even if you have been getting paid in cash or as a “1099” worker rather than as a full-fledged, full-time employee.
  • Should your claim be denied or disputed, attorney Rivenbark will take action quickly and decisively, with your best interests always in view.

Our team will carefully evaluate every aspect of your claim and guide you through the workers’ compensation system. If your claim requires settling a dispute with an insurance company, we have years of experience handling complex insurance claims. We will ensure you receive the benefits you are legally entitled to claim after a workplace injury.

How Are Workers’ Compensation Benefits Determined?

The North Carolina Industrial Commission (NCIC) requires workers’ compensation insurance carriers to offer different levels of benefits that fluctuate based on the severity of an injury and whether an injury prevents the victim from going back to work for an extended time or indefinitely. As a result, workers’ compensation benefits in North Carolina function on a temporary or permanent basis and are awarded in “partial” or “total” designations.

If you cannot work at all because of your injury and the permanent damage it caused, you can qualify for permanent total disability benefits. If you can return to work after you heal, you can receive temporary total disability benefits. If you can return to work, but your injury prevents you from earning as much as you did before your injury, you can qualify for partial temporary disability benefits. If your injury prevents you from resuming your previous job duties, but you can still work, you will likely qualify for permanent partial disability benefits.

What Happens If I’m Injured Outside of My Workplace?

Many people do not work in one place every day, and travel is a critical job duty for many people working in North Carolina. If you sustained an injury while performing job duties, it does not matter if you were in your usual workspace or not. For example, if you work in construction and were delivering tools to a job site when a negligent driver hit your vehicle and injured you, this still qualifies as a work-related injury and thus makes you eligible to claim workers’ compensation benefits. However, if a third party outside of your workplace caused your work-related injury, you can take further legal action beyond a workers’ compensation claim.

Workers’ compensation benefits typically include coverage of all the medical treatment you require to heal from your injury and manage your symptoms. If you cannot work while you recover, or if you develop a disability from your injury, you can qualify for disability benefits that will pay you roughly two-thirds of your average weekly wage for a predetermined period. Some individuals will qualify for permanent disability benefits on a total or partial basis, depending on the severity of their injuries.

Your Wilmington workers’ compensation lawyer is the best resource to consult if you believe you have grounds for legal action beyond a workers’ compensation claim. Christina Rivenbark & Associates has extensive experience with workers’ compensation claims and third-party personal injury claims. We will carefully evaluate your situation to determine the full scope of your legal options.

FAQs

Do I Have To Hire A Workers’ Comp Lawyer?

A: Technically, it’s possible to handle a workers’ compensation claim without a lawyer. However, the best way to streamline your claim proceedings and increase the chance of maximizing your benefit determination is to have a Wilmington workers’ compensation lawyer help you with your claim.

Will Workers’ Comp Payments Stop When I Return To Work?

A: Your workers’ compensation benefits hinge on the severity of your injury and whether you can resume your previous job duties. Some claimants will qualify for partial disability benefits if they cannot earn as much as they did before their injury or if they are unable to resume their previous job. When partial disability benefits are available, they typically last for a period determined by the insurance carrier. Workers’ compensation benefits only continue indefinitely when an injured worker is left permanently disabled and cannot work at all in the future due to their injury.

How Much Do Workers’ Comp Lawyers Charge?

A: Most workers’ compensation attorneys will charge their clients by the hour. The more time they spend working on a client’s case, the more they will pay in legal fees. If you have reservations about the potential cost of legal representation for your workers’ compensation claim, ask your attorney to clarify their billing policy, so you know exactly what to expect.

What Should You Ask When Hiring A Workers’ Compensation Attorney?

A: Ask a potential attorney about their experience handling cases similar to yours. A good Wilmington workers’ compensation lawyer should be able to quickly identify the unique aspects of your case and any challenges you might encounter as you work toward securing the benefits you need. You should also ask the attorney about how much time they anticipate spending on your case so you have an idea of what your legal fees will cost.

You Can Trust Us To Protect Your Rights And Consider All Legal Options

We will hear you out on all you remember about your accident and back injury, neck injury or other disabling condition. We will investigate, if necessary, to uncover all possible sources of financial support. If someone other than your employer — a subcontractor or equipment manufacturer, for example — is legally liable for your injury, a “third-party” personal injury lawsuit may have substantially greater value than your work comp claim.

Contact us today to schedule a free, personal consultation with an experienced Wilmington workers’ compensation lawyer. Call us at 910-251-8080 or send us an email online.

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