OKLAHOMA WORKERS COMP SETTLEMENT
Workers’ Compensation Settlement Attorney in Tulsa
No one goes to work expecting to become injured in an accident – and yet work accidents occur every day, all over Oklahoma. From slight mishaps to catastrophic events, you can become seriously injured in a work accident and your life can be changed forever. Most employers across OK are required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance to protect employees in the event of an accident at work.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. companies pay an estimated $1 billion on disabling workplace injuries each week. Many of these claims are completely settled by paying for the employee’s medical care, payments for time off work and other expenses. The employee recovers from their injury and returns to work, the remaining medical bills are paid and the case is closed.
But not every Workers’ Compensation claim is that simple. Some injuries require long-term care or cause a permanent (or semi-permanent) disability that makes returning to a former job complicated, if not impossible. In these cases, a worker may opt to negotiate a settlement with the Workers’ Compensation insurance company. If you sustain a serious injury at work in Oklahoma, you need to consult with a Workers Comp Settlement Attorney in Tulsa from The Armstrong Law Firm PLC.
What is a Workers Comp Settlement?
No two work accidents are entirely alike and the injuries you may suffer are unique and varied. This often makes Workers’ Compensation claims complex and even challenging. The paperwork involved can be confusing, employing complex language and legal provisions. This is why you should always partner with a Workers Comp Settlement Attorney to handle the negotiations and other legal chores.
A Workers Comp Settlement is basically a structured settlement for a set amount of money. A settlement can be initially offered by your employer or their insurance company, or you can request a settlement. Most settlement offers stem from a complex injury that may require long-term care, or a disabling injury that makes it difficult or impossible to return to your previous job.
A Workers Comp settlement can be either a lump sum or a structured payment plan:
- Lump sum payment: the injured worker receives a one-time payment for all medical costs and benefits under the claim. You may be required to forego any future reimbursement for your injury and your Workers’ Comp claim will be closed.
- Structured payment: the injured worker receives regular payments over a specified period of time.
Considerations Before Accepting a Workers Comp Settlement
The terms of any Workers Comp settlement can be confusing, so getting help from an OK Workers’ Compensation Attorney is vital. They can explain what is involved and help you consider some important factors surrounding any settlement. Here are some items you should consider before accepting any Workers’ Comp settlement offer.
Why Was a Settlement Offered?
If your employer or their insurance company has offered you a Workers’ Comp settlement, what was their motivation? Most often, your injury may require long-term care and the insurance company will save money over time by paying out a one-time payment instead of actually covering your ongoing medical expenses. This could not be in your best interests because:
- Accepting a Joint Petition settlement terminates your future rights to coverage.
- If your injury worsens, you are unable to seek additional benefits.
- Your employer’s chosen doctor is often the one determining your level of impairment, which can favor your employer’s insurance company over your best interests.
Why Should I Ask for a Settlement?
Injured employees in Oklahoma may ask for a settlement offer from their employer’s insurance company. Depending on your circumstances and level of impairment after an injury, you may be able to negotiate a better long-term deal than simply accepting whatever Workers’ Comp will pay out under the standard guidelines. An Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Attorney can help you decide the best course of action in your specific situation.
What Should Be Included in My Workers Comp Settlement?
Whether you decide to ask for a settlement or if one has been offered, you should be sure that it adequately covers your present and future needs. A Workers Comp Settlement Attorney from The Armstrong Law Firm can help you calculate a reasonable settlement amount and negotiate with insurance company representatives.
Any settlement offer you consider should include adequate compensation for:
- Current Medical Expenses
- Future Medical Expenses due to lasting complications
- Lost Wages due to the injury, past, present and future.
- Specific Losses due to any long-term handicap to a specific bodily limb or function
- Temporary or permanent disability payments
- Attorney fees
Your Workers’ Compensation Attorney can help you collect data to verify these needs, as this will be necessary to satisfy the complex rules that govern Oklahoma Workers Comp settlements. After you and your employer’s insurance company reach a settlement agreement, it must be approved by a Workers’ Comp judge.
Meet with a Tulsa Workers Comp Settlement Attorney Today
When you are involved in an accident at work and suffer a serious injury, don’t hesitate to contact The Armstrong Law Firm PLC in Tulsa for a free consultation. We can help explain the Workers’ Compensation claim process and advise you on your rights and options. We can also provide valuable assistance in negotiating a Workers’ Comp settlement that is in your best interests.