Do I Have A Good Workers Comp Case? What Makes A Good Case Versus A Bad Case?

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July 3  

Three Factors That Makes A Workers Comp A Good Case

In this article, I answer the number one question I get from people who got hurt at work. Do I have a good case? Do I have a good worker's comp case? What makes a good case?  

I've given a little bit of thought and there's really just a couple of things. There are three parts to a comp case. The first part is, are you an employee who was hurt at work? The second part is, the fact that you're in the nature and extent of your injury that is very clear and indisputable. Third is, Is there absolutely no history of this problem that you had until the work injury or is it a lingering problem you've had for years and the work injury made it worse? Let's talk about the first one.

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Must Be An Employee

In order to recover in workers comp and file a worker's comp claim, you have to be an employee not an independent contractor. That means you got to get taxes taken out of your check and it's a regular employment relationship where they you know where they direct your work rather than you being an independent contractor. If you're an employee, you're covered by workers comp.

Is it indisputable that the accident happened? So, did you fall off a ladder in full view of 30 other employees and the boss and other independent witnesses? Or did you get hurt while you were alone and then didn't report it for a week? In the first scenario, there's no way the company can credibly dispute that the accident happened. But in a lot of these cases, if it's un-witnessed and you report the accident late, they'll sometimes fight the case on that basis. That's something to think about. If it's indisputable and you're definitely an employee, you got a stronger case.

Clear Indisputable Injury

The second thing is, what is the nature and extent of the injury? So on the one hand, we could have a broken leg. Everybody saw you walk into work that day, you have an accident that everybody sees and your leg is broken and everybody can look at it and tell it's broken. You go to the hospital immediately and they diagnosed as a broken leg.

That is a clear indisputable injury. That makes for a strong case. Contrast that with like a neck injury that comes and goes and they give you an MRI and it shows a little something but it's not a herniated disk with a nerve being pinched. It turns out that, a lot of times with the neck or back injury, you can have a normal MRI or an MRI that doesn't show much, but still really have pain.

But with an injury like that versus the broken leg the company can easily hire a doctor to fight the case. So a clear, indisputable injury makes for a stronger case.

No History Of Any Injury

The third one is, whether there's any history of that injury before or whether it's pretty much indisputable that it was caused by what happened at work. We can use the same, we can use the same analogy. If you walked into work, everybody saw you walk into work, you work great for three hours, you fall off the ladder and now your leg is obviously broken and you obviously can't walk. There's no question that the fall caused the broken leg.

But same analogy as last time. If we're talking about a neck injury, and the company or the workers comp insurance orders your medical records from the past, and there's a ton of neck treatment in the past, and you went the week before to tell the doctor that your neck was killing you, then you have this work injury and your neck injury gets worse, that's like a built-in defense for the workers comp insurance.

That pretty much gives you an idea of what makes for a good case versus a tougher case. So I hope that information helps you.

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About the author - Scott D. DeSalvo

I've been helping injured people just like you for my entire 20+ year career in all kinds of injury cases, and I can probably help you, too.

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