Common Terms Used By Workers Compensation Attorneys
Dealing with the reams of paperwork generated by a worker's compensation claim or personal injury lawsuit wouldn't be easy for someone who doesn't know about this type of law. Most people who are filing these claims have been seriously injured in an accident and aren't in the best of health. Having an attorney file your disability claim or lawsuit can help clear matters up, but sometimes it seems like they're speaking a foreign language, too. Understanding basic legal terms is critical for insuring that your rights are observed after an accident or injury that wasn't your fault. Here are some terms you're likely to hear when filing this type of claim with an insurance company or employer.
Alternative Work - In many cases injured workers are temporarily reassigned to another position until they are well enough to return to their old work. This is an option that allows lawyers to help their workers without having to compensate them through disability benefits.
Disability - A medical condition that prevents a worker from doing the same work he or she did before their injury. An injured worker in this situation may be compensated by his or her employer, or the government, with permanent benefits.
Occupational Therapy - A form of physical rehabilitation that helps injury victims learn to basic tasks such as teeth brushing and getting dressed. It is not, training to help a worker relearn his or her former work.
Social Security Disability Insurance - This government funded compensation is what your personal injury attorney is working towards. It's a lifelong benefit that is a lifeline to injured workers.
What merits a workers’ compensation claim? Let’s say you are working in a warehouse and you are injured by equipment, this is cause for a workers’ compensation claim. When you are injured while traveling to a location on a work errand and you are still on the clock for your employer, then this is also a workers’ compensation issue. Workers’ compensation claims can be for a cut finger in a commercial kitchen while working or a chemical accident in a lab during a work day. A worker can return to the same workplace after medical attention if he or she does not suffer permanent disability. Judges overseeing the case will inquire if the injury has truly hindered the individual’s ability to work. The company may compensate for the days of work missed and such insurance may pay for emergency medical treatment and rehabilitation. Sometimes employers terminate employees as retaliation for the claim. So even after companies compensate the injured person, they may break labor law. Here are some terms to help you communicate with your attorney.
Apportionment – A method of determining the amount of permanent disability caused by your personal injury at work versus the contribution of your pre-existing medical conditions.
Commutation – When a workers’ compensation judge orders the employer to pay a lumps sum for your permanent disability reparation.
Cumulative injury – Personal injury at work caused by recurring events and exposure instead of a single accident.
Discrimination Claim – If the employer harasses you or terminates you because of the filing of workers’ compensation claims. An attorney can defend you because this is against labor law.