If you have been permanently disabled because of a work injury, the workers' comp insurer may offer you a settlement. The amount you are offered depends on several factors. Read on and find out what you can expect with the settlement process.
Not all injuries heal and if a doctor rules that you are not able to work at your job, you may be offered a settlement. In some cases, you may still be able to work at other jobs depending on the nature and severity of your injuries. Being offered a settlement doesn't interfere with working again at other jobs if the job is not like your old job. Settlements can be tricky and it's very easy for hurt workers to make mistakes that cannot be undone. Read on and find out more.
When a worker fails to completely heal from a workplace injury, they may be asked to take part in a special medical examination. The independent medical exam (IME) may be conducted by the workers' compensation insurer to find out more about your injury. If you don't agree with the exam findings, speak to a workers' compensation lawyer right away. They can set you up with another doctor for a second opinion. The results of this exam can determine your level of disability and your ability to work at other jobs.
After the exams are performed, you may be ruled to be at maximum medical improvement (MMI). That means your injury is not expected to improve any further. That usually opens the door for settlement negotiations, and these are best handled with the help of a workers' compensation lawyer. These lawyers can help you know how much you are entitled to be paid, what you are likely to be paid, and the best way of being paid.
What Should Be Included?
A careful evaluation of your medical status should go into the settlement negotiation. For instance, you will need medical care in the future, and you might not want to depend on government assistance for that care. You also might be able to work at other jobs and you need to understand how that could affect your payments.
Workers' compensation settlements come in several ways, and it can be difficult to make a good decision. Count on your lawyer to help you understand what is best for your situation. For example, you probably will have the option to take your entire settlement in one single payment all at once. However, if you agree to have regular payments instead, you could end up being paid more money in total.
Speak to a workers' compensation lawyer and make decisions about your workers' compensation settlement.