If you’ve been injured on the job in Wisconsin, filing for workers’ compensation can provide you with much-needed financial stability during the recovery process. But, this is only the case if your workers’ compensation claim is successful. If you aren’t successful in securing benefits, not only could you lose out on money you deserve, but you could also end up with bills you can’t afford to pay.
With this in mind, is it worth trying to handle your workers’ compensation claim on your own? Or, should you hire a lawyer to represent you?
10 Reasons to Hire a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer in Wisconsin
Simply put, there are lots of reasons to put an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer on your side. If you need to seek workers’ compensation benefits for a job-related injury in Wisconsin, here are 10 of the most-important reasons to hire a lawyer for your claim:
1. You Need to Protect Your Claim for Benefits
If you have a workers’ compensation claim, you need to protect it. If you don’t, you could lose your right to benefits. Among other things, protecting your claim for workers’ compensation benefits means:
- Reporting your injury on time;
- Including all necessary information in your report; and,
- Filing your claim before the deadline expires.
Your lawyer can help you with each of these steps. If you wait too long, or if you don’t include all required information, your claim could be over before it even begins.
2. You Need to Prove Your Eligibility for Benefits
Even if you are clearly eligible for benefits under Wisconsin’s workers’ compensation law, you will still need to prove your eligibility to collect the benefits you deserve. Your lawyer can assist you with gathering all necessary documentation and proving that you qualify based on the facts surrounding your injury and your employment status.
3. You Need to Make Sure You Receive the Full Benefits You Deserve
Unfortunately, you cannot count on your employer’s insurance company to pay the full benefits you deserve. While it should pay full benefits, there is a good chance that it won’t. When you hire a lawyer, your lawyer can accurately calculate your benefits for you—that way, you won’t unknowingly settle for less than you deserve.
4. You Need to Make Sure Your Benefits Don’t End Too Soon
In addition to underpaying your benefits, the insurance company may also try to terminate your benefits prematurely. If this happens, you will need an experienced lawyer in your corner. Your lawyer can prove your continuing eligibility, and your lawyer can take legal action against the insurance company if necessary.
5. You May Be Better Off with a Workers’ Comp Settlement
If your injury prevents you from working, you could be entitled to weeks, months, or years’ worth of disability benefits. In this scenario, it may be in your best interests to negotiate a lump-sum settlement rather than waiting to see if your weekly benefit checks come in the mail. Your lawyer can help you decide whether to seek a settlement; and, if you would be better off with a settlement, your lawyer can negotiate on your behalf.
6. Your Employer (or Its Insurance Company) Might Deny Your Claim
Along with the risk of underpayment and early termination, there is also a risk that your employer (or its insurance company) will deny your claim entirely. If this happens, you will need to figure out why, and you will need to determine your next steps. With an experienced lawyer on your side, there is less chance that you will receive a wrongful denial; and, if you receive a denial, your lawyer can take action to appeal the denial immediately.
7. There Are Many Costly Mistakes You Need to Avoid
When you have a workers’ compensation claim in Wisconsin, there are many costly mistakes you need to avoid. If you make mistakes, this could delay your receipt of benefits—or it could even jeopardize your workers’ compensation claim entirely. When you hire a lawyer, your lawyer will walk you through what not to do while your claim is pending, and your lawyer will handle the most important aspects of your claim for you.
8. You Might Have a Claim Outside of Workers’ Comp
While filing a workers’ compensation claim is one way to recover the costs of a job-related injury in Wisconsin, it may not be the only option you have available. Depending on what happened and who was responsible, you could potentially have a variety of other claims as well. Your lawyer can provide a comprehensive assessment of your legal rights, and your lawyer can pursue all available claims in order to maximize your financial recovery.
9. Hiring a Lawyer Costs Nothing Out-of-Pocket
While many injured workers have concerns about the cost of hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer, the reality is that you can get experienced legal representation at no out-of-pocket cost. This is because workers’ compensation lawyers work on a “contingency fee” basis. When you hire a workers’ compensation lawyer to represent you, you will not pay any legal fees up front—and you will not pay any legal fees at all unless your lawyer helps you secure benefits.
10. Your Lawyer Can Help Maximize Your Take-Home Compensation
Won’t your lawyer’s contingency fees reduce the amount of your recovery? While the technical answer is “Yes,” the practical answer is “No.” Even though your legal fees will come out of your benefits, a reputable workers’ compensation lawyer will not take your case unless the lawyer believes he or she can help you take home more than you could recover on your own.
Schedule a Free Workers’ Comp Consultation at Mays Law Office in Madison, WI
If you have more questions about hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer in Wisconsin, we encourage you to schedule a free consultation. We will be happy to answer all of your questions and help you make an informed decision about how best to move forward. To schedule an appointment at Mays Law Office in Madison, WI, please call 608-257-0440 or get in touch online today.