The Workplace Injury Claim Process
Once we know you should pursue a third-party liability lawsuit, we will not waste time filing the proper paperwork and finding the evidence necessary to secure compensation. We’ll make sure you’re informed the entire time we work on your case.
Finding the Liable Party in Your West Texas Injury Accident
Identifying the people responsible for your injuries is crucial if you cannot access workers’ compensation benefits. We’ll investigate your case thoroughly, looking through the accident report, finding any photographic or video evidence, and checking witness statements. Any relevant information that can guide us to the party responsible will benefit your case.
Calculating Your Damages
If you’ve been injured on the job, you could face expensive medical costs while you can’t work. If someone’s negligent actions injured you and kept you off work, they can be held accountable for your damages. A major part of every personal injury claim is knowing how much your claim is worth. You need an accurate total to ensure the best chance of winning a settlement.
Under Texas personal injury law, you can recover your economic and non-economic damages caused in a workplace accident. Your economic losses are your out-of-pocket expenses, the losses you experienced directly because of the accident. That includes medical bills, lost wages, or property damage.
Your non-economic damages are conceptual in nature. These are losses you’ve experienced because of your injuries. They can be difficult to calculate things like the mental anguish you suffered from your injuries, your diminished quality of life, or your reduced earning capacity.
Your lawsuit may be able to get you compensation for other losses, like your:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Physical limitations
If we take your case to trial, we want to be able to show the jury how these injuries have impacted you and your family’s daily lives and future. Proving damages also may require hiring a medical, economic, vocational, or other experts who can testify as to your inability to work, future medical expenses, and lost income.
After you’ve filed your third-party lawsuit, the liable party will have time to respond. It’s rare that they’d accept responsibility and pay you what you’re owed after a workplace accident. They’ll probably dispute the claim, and negotiations will begin.
Both sides will be able to examine available evidence during the discovery phase. We’ll use this to establish the at-fault party’s weaknesses and develop a strategy to pursue maximum compensation.
We’ll be able to sit down with the insurance company to discuss settlement amounts. They may offer lowball settlements or attempt to put blame on your shoulders for your injuries. We’ll stand firm: our evidence will show they owe you for your damages.
If the negotiations can result in an agreed-upon settlement, we’ll accept it and move on. If the insurer does not agree with a settlement amount, our next step is to go to trial. Kemmy Law Firm has experience handling workplace accident trials. We’ve helped clients recover millions in verdicts and settlements.
Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits
If workers’ compensation covers you, notify your employer of your injury as soon as possible. Then, file an Employee’s Claim for Compensation for a Work-Related Injury or Occupational Disease (DWC Form-041) with the Texas Division of Workers’ Compensation.
The DWC then notifies your employer, and the workers’ comp insurer will accept or deny your claim.
Workers’ compensation insurance covers injured workers in various ways, depending on their circumstances.
- Temporary Income Benefits (TIBs):If you are temporarily disabled for more than seven days, you can receive 70% of the difference between your average weekly wages and the wages you are able to earn after your on-the-job injury.
- Impairment Income Benefits (IIBs): If you have a permanent partial disability that impacts your income, you may receive IIBs. The duration of IIBs depends on your impairment rating (IR), which signals the degree to which your body is impaired. You receive three weeks of IIBs for every percentage of impairment. The amount is based on 70% of your average weekly wages.
- Supplemental Income Benefits (SIBs):If you have an IR of 15% or higher, have not returned to work or earn less than 80% of your pre-injury average weekly wages, are looking for work, and have not accepted a lump sum settlement, you can apply for SIBs. You must apply for these benefits every three months.
- Lifetime Income (LIBs):You can receive lifetime income if you lost an extremity, lost your vision, sustained a spinal cord injury and paralysis, suffered a TBI causing insanity or imbecility or suffered third-degree burns over 40% or more of your body. You are entitled to 75% of your average weekly wages with a 3% increase each year.
If your claim is accepted, the insurer will calculate your benefits. Talk with an attorney if your claim is denied or the insurer calculated your benefits incorrectly.