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Trainor Law Firm, LLC
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Lafayette, LA Workers’ Comp Lawyers

workers comp lawyersWorkplace accidents are an alarmingly common phenomenon in Louisiana. Data shows that Louisiana is the fourth most dangerous state for workers – with an occupational injury and fatality rate considerably higher than the national average.

When workplace accidents occur, workers’ compensation acts as an indispensable safety net and provides medical and financial assistance to injured workers when they need it the most. At the same time, filing a workers’ compensation claim in Lafayette, LA can be a tedious and complicated process – especially if your claim is disputed by your employer.

At Trainor Law Firm, we are fully committed to protecting the rights of injured workers and their families. If you have suffered a workplace injury, we can assess the full extent of your injury and other losses, help you file a claim, and make sure you get all the benefits you are entitled to in the shortest timeframe possible.

If your claim has been disputed or denied, we can help you file an appeal as well. Call us today at 985-900-2250 to schedule a free consultation with one of our outstanding and diligent Lafayette, LA workers comp lawyers.

What Kind of Injuries and Illnesses Are Covered under the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Program? 

The Louisiana workers’ compensation program covers a wide range of injuries and illnesses that are caused as a result of working conditions or occur during the course of employment. The common types of injuries and illnesses covered include:

  • Accidental Injuries: Injuries that result from accidents at the workplace like slips, falls, machinery accidents, and other unexpected events.
  • Occupational Diseases: Illnesses or medical conditions that develop gradually as a result of workplace exposures like repetitive stress injuries, occupational lung diseases, and certain toxic exposures.
  • Aggravation of Pre-existing Conditions: If a pre-existing condition is aggravated or worsened due to work activities or conditions, it may be covered.
  • Injuries during Work-Related Travel: Injuries sustained while traveling for work-related purposes like business trips or transportation between job sites.
  • Psychological Injuries: Mental or emotional conditions that are a direct result of a traumatic event or stressors encountered in the workplace.
  • Cumulative Trauma: Injuries that result from repetitive activities or prolonged exposure to work conditions over time, leading to physical or mental health issues.
  • Injuries during Breaks and Lunch: Injuries that occur during authorized breaks or lunch periods on the employer’s premises may be covered.

Getting Medical Care after a Workplace Injury in Lafayette, LA 

Following a workplace accident, it is extremely important to get prompt medical attention for your injuries. If it is a serious injury, you can call 911 or go to the nearest hospital. There are many hospitals in Lafayette where you can get emergency medical care for workplace injuries. These include:

  • Ochsner Lafayette General Medical Center
  • Lafayette General Surgical Hospital
  • Ochsner University Hospital and Clinics
  • Our Lady of Lourdes Heart Hospital
  • Lafayette General Southwest

Under Louisiana law, you have the right to choose your own doctor to treat your workplace injury or illness. Based on this, if your treatment costs more than $750, the doctor is required to get the approval of your employer’s insurance company.

Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Injured Workers 

The benefits available under Louisiana workers’ compensation program include:

Medical Benefits 

You are entitled to receive reasonable and necessary medical treatment related to your work injury or illness. This includes doctor visits, hospital stays, surgeries, at-home nursing services, crutches and other assistive devices, physical therapy, prescription medications, and other injury or illness-related expenses.

Income Benefits 

  • Temporary Total Disability (TTD) – If you are unable to work while recovering, you can receive TTD benefits, which can be up to two-thirds of your average weekly wage.
  • Supplemental Earnings Benefits (SEB) – If you are only able to perform light-duty work or work with restrictions and cannot earn at least 90% of your pre-injury earnings, you can receive SEB payments. These benefits can be up to two-thirds of the difference between the wages you earned before the accident and the wages you are paid now.
  • Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) – If your injury results in a permanent impairment, but you can still work, you can receive PPD benefits, which can be paid as a lump sum or on a weekly basis.
  • Permanent Total Disability (PTD) – If your injury results in a permanent impairment that prevents you from performing any kind of gainful work, you can receive PTD benefits for the duration of your disability.

Catastrophic Injury Benefits 

In Louisiana, catastrophic injuries are recognized as a specific category under workers’ compensation. According to the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act, the following types of injuries are considered catastrophic injuries.

  • Serious spinal cord or traumatic brain injuries resulting in paraplegia and quadriplegia.
  • Amputation injuries resulting in the loss of an arm, leg, hand, or foot.
  • Third-degree burns covering 40% of the body or more.
  • Loss of both eyes.

In the event of a catastrophic occupational injury, you can receive a lump sum of $50,000. Apart from this, you might also be eligible to receive other benefits – depending on the nature and severity of your disability.

Vocational Rehabilitation 

Depending on your injury, you might be eligible for vocational rehabilitation programs that can help you return to work.

How Our Lafayette, LA Workers’ Comp Attorneys Can Maximize Your Benefits

Ensuring Complete and Accurate Documentation 

We can make sure that all the necessary documentation is complete and accurate. Thorough documentation can strengthen your case and support your claim for receiving maximum benefits.

Determining Eligibility for Additional Benefits 

Workers’ compensation benefits are not just limited to medical expenses and wage replacement. We can assess whether you are eligible for vocational rehabilitation, assistance with job placement, and other benefits.

Maximizing Disability Benefits 

Depending on the nature and severity of your injury, you might be eligible to receive partial or total disability benefits. We can accurately assess the extent of your injuries and make sure you are assigned the appropriate disability rating to maximize your payments.

Negotiating with Insurers and Employers 

We can negotiate with the workers’ compensation insurance company and your employer to make sure you receive all the benefits you are entitled to. This includes advocating for appropriate medical treatment, disability benefits, and other additional benefits.

Assessing Third-Party Liability 

In some cases, a third-party might be partially responsible for your injury. We can assess whether there is a possibility of filing a personal injury claim against them, which could result in additional compensation – above and beyond your workers’ compensation benefits.

How Our Lafayette, LA Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Can Help You If the Employer Disputes Your Claim 

In some cases, your employer might dispute your claim due to various reasons. If and when it happens, our Lafayette, LA workers’ comp lawyers can work to resolve the dispute and help you get the benefits you need. Given below are some of the common reasons why your employer might dispute your claim and the steps we can take to help you.

Dispute over the Cause of the Injury 

Your employer might dispute your claim if they believe the injury did not occur in the course and scope of employment. We can gather evidence like witness statements and medical records, demonstrate that the injury is indeed work-related, and present a strong case to counter your employer’s dispute.

Pre-Existing Conditions

Your employer might argue that your injury is the result of a pre-existing condition rather than a workplace incident. We can consult with medical professionals and gather all relevant records to establish a clear connection between the workplace incident and your injury.

Disagreement on Medical Treatment 

Your employer might dispute the necessity or extent of medical treatment recommended by your doctor. We can work with medical experts to support the need for specific treatments and procedures. We can also negotiate with your employer’s insurance company to make sure you receive appropriate medical care.

Disagreements on Disability Rating 

Your employer might dispute the severity of your disability, which can lead to disagreements on the amount of benefits owed. We can consult with medical professionals to prove the extent and severity of your disability and make sure you are assigned the appropriate disability rating.

If the dispute cannot be resolved informally, we can file a Disputed Claim for Compensation with the Office of Workers’ Compensation Administration (OWCA), represent you at the hearing, present all the necessary evidence to the administrative law judge, and get expert witnesses to testify to support your claim.

If the dispute still remains unresolved, we can appeal to the Louisiana Court of Appeal, which will review the record of the administrative hearing and might choose to affirm, reverse, or modify the decision.

Injured in the Workplace? Our Top-Rated Lafayette, LA Workers’ Comp Attorneys Can Help You Get the Benefits You Deserve

Getting legal representation right after a workplace injury can significantly impact the outcome of your case and ensure that you receive the full range of benefits you are entitled to. Attorney Brian F. Trainor has extensive experience in representing injured workers and their families and can provide you with the guidance you need at every step of the workers’ compensation claim process.

Call the Trainor Law Firm today at 985-900-2250 or get in touch with us online to schedule a free consultation with a skilled and experienced Lafayette, LA workers’ compensation lawyer.

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