Legal Advice For Injured Workers
To protect your rights, it’s important to consult a lawyer as soon as possible after a work injury. Massachusetts workers’ compensation laws are clearly in favor of the employer. Workers’ compensation law is complex, and you need to follow specific procedures to obtain compensation.
At the Taunton, Massachusetts, Law Offices of Aleixo and Murray, P.C., our lawyers offer a free, confidential initial consultation for people who have been injured on the job at construction sites and other workplaces.
Note How Workers’ Comp Works In Massachusetts
Workers’ compensation laws differ from state to state. In Massachusetts, you can file a claim after the fifth day following an injury. You are entitled to 60 percent of your gross average weekly pay and free medical treatment if you can prove that your injury arose from a work-related incident.
You may also be entitled to compensation for any permanent impairment that results from the injury, as well as vocational retraining if your injury prevents you from doing your regular job.
During your first 180 days of benefits, the insurance company can pay without prejudice. This means that they can stop paying you at any time without getting the approval of the Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA).
If you are denied benefits, you should retain a lawyer, and file a claim with the Massachusetts Division of Industrial Accidents immediately. It can take up to four or five months to have a hearing with DIA.
Is Your Heart Disease Work-Related?
If you have heart disease, Massachusetts workers’ compensation laws will presume that it is work-related if you are a police officer or fireman. However, there is no such presumption for any other type of worker. To obtain workers’ compensation benefits for heart disease, you and your attorney would have to get experts to relate the heart disease to stress or some other cause at work.
When A Workplace Injury Triggers A Personal Injury Claim
You cannot normally sue your employer for a work-related injury. Workers’ compensation laws prevent that. However, if your work injury was caused by someone other than your employer or a co-worker, you can make what is known as a third-party claim against the negligent party.
An example of a third-party claim would be an injury resulting from a car accident that occurs while you are on the job. In this case, you would be able to collect compensation for pain and suffering, and other damages from the responsible party through a personal injury claim or lawsuit.