Your life is going as usual, and then an unexpected accident occurs at work. Regardless of whether the accident was small or extremely serious, chances are it disrupted your routine.
While your workers’ compensation insurance is supposed to help you recover your losses after an accident, the reality is that many times, the money you receive is not enough.
The Gulfport workers’ compensation lawyers at the Morris Bart law firm, want you to know that you are not alone. We can help you through the claims process, negotiate with the insurance company, and potentially even stand by your side in court if we cannot agree on a fair settlement.
For a free, no-risk review of your case, contact the Morris Bart law office today at (228) 357-9621 to speak with a member of our team.
Common Types of Workplace Accidents
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), 4.6 million injuries occur at work every year. That works out to one accident occurring every seven seconds. In 2017, those injuries resulted in 104 million production days that were lost.
The three most common events that result in lost workdays due to injuries are:
- Overexertion: Possibly from lifting or lowering heavy objects or through repetitive motion.
- Contact with equipment or objects: This can occur because an object fell on the employee, they were compressed by equipment, or they were caught under a structure that collapsed on them.
- Slips and falls: This includes situations where the employee tripped and fell.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), transportation accidents are the most frequent type of fatal event, causing 40% of work-related fatalities.
Other types of workplace accidents result from:
- Malfunctioning tools, machinery, and equipment
- Chemical, thermal, and electrical burns
- Poisonous fumes
- Defective products
For a free legal consultation with a Workers’ Compensation lawyer serving Gulfport, call 800-537-8185
Occupations With the Highest Number of Workplace Injuries
The five occupations that tend to report the highest number of workplace injuries are:
- Service workers, including firefighters and police officers
- Shipping and transportation workers
- Manufacturing and production employees
- Installation, maintenance, and repair employees
- Construction workers
If you work in one of these industries—or another that is not listed—and you experienced an injury at work, you could be entitled to compensation for your losses. A Gulfport workers’ compensation lawyer can help you negotiate with the insurance company to help you fully recover compensation for your injuries. Contact the Morris Bart law firm today at (228) 357-9621 to discuss your case with a team member free of charge.
Gulfport Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Near Me 800-537-8185
Mississippi’s Workers’ Compensation Law
Workers’ compensation is an insurance plan paid entirely by employers to provide employees with medical and wage loss benefits if they are in a workplace accident.
Mississippi Code § 71-3-5 requires all employers with five or more employees to provide workers’ compensation. There are a few exceptions, such as domestic and farm labor, or employees who work with religious, charitable, and cultural nonprofit organizations. Federal employees and certain maritime and transportation employment are also not covered, as those employees are covered by federal workers’ compensation laws.
Any injury is covered under workers’ compensation if it occurred within the scope of employment. Workplace deaths and occupational illnesses and diseases are also covered.
It is important to note that there is no waiting period. An employee is covered under workers’ compensation from the first day of employment.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
In the state of Mississippi, workers’ compensation provides two basic benefits for employees.
An employee is entitled to whatever medical services are “reasonable and necessary” in order to treat their injuries and achieve the greatest possible outcome for their recovery. Workers’ compensation covers things like:
- Hospital stays
- Doctor’s examinations
- Nursing services
- Physical therapy
- Assistive devices like crutches, walkers, or wheelchairs
- Mileage reimbursement for doctor’s visits
If an employee has to miss work because of the extent of their injuries, they are entitled to a wage loss benefit that equals two-thirds of their average weekly wage, up to a certain limit and for a limited period of time, both of which are set by the Legislature in Mississippi Code § 71-3-17.
These benefits are known as “temporary disability” and “permanent disability,” which may become due if a doctor determines that the employee has a permanent handicap after achieving maximum medical improvement.
If there is any dispute regarding whether you remain disabled after reaching maximum medical improvement, you might benefit from discussing your case with a Gulfport workers’ compensation lawyer.
Benefits After Death
If the employee did not survive because of the seriousness of their injuries, the workers’ compensation law guarantees benefits to the employee’s surviving spouse and/or surviving dependents. These payments can continue up to 450 weeks after the employee’s death. The benefits are equal to a percentage of the deceased employee’s wages, up to a certain limit. The insurance company is also required to pay for funeral and burial costs up to $5,000, as well as a lump sum payment of $1,000 to the surviving spouse.
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What to Do if You Have Been Injured on the Job
If you are injured on the job, you should immediately notify your supervisor and a workers’ compensation lawyer, although you have up to 30 days after the accident occurs to provide notice. Your employer will need to contact the insurance company right away to help you recover your benefits.
If you do not notify your employer within 30 days and your employer does not know about the injuries or illness, the insurance company could choose to deny your claim.
A statute of limitations does apply to worker’s compensation claims. If you have not started receiving benefits within two years of the date of your accident or the onset of your illness, then any right you have to benefits will be barred unless you file a claim with the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Commission during the two-year window.
How a Gulfport Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Can Help
While many claims can be handled without dispute, some cases are more complex. A Gulfport workers’ compensation lawyer can help you negotiate with the insurance company. They can also help you file a petition with the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Commission if your claim is denied.
Contact the Morris Bart law firm today at (228) 357-9621 to speak with a member of our team and receive a free, no-risk review of your workers’ compensation claim.
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