Workers Comp Lawyers in Homewood, AL
Getting hurt on the job can be one of the most devastating events someone has to go through, especially if it is a long-term injury. Being out of work for an extended period of time is bad enough, and on top of that, there are medical bills that have to be paid and the possibility of a permanent impairment that could prevent you from going back to the job you once had. When a workplace injury occurs in Homewood or a nearby Alabama community, this is the time that employers are supposed to step up and take care of their employees.
The workers’ compensation system was created for situations like these, but unfortunately, it does not always operate the way it should. Workers’ comp is a no-fault system – which means that under most circumstances, an employee who suffers a work-related injury or illness is supposed to receive benefits, regardless of who was at fault. The claims process is very complicated, however, and in many cases, employers put up unnecessary roadblocks that frustrate employees into giving up on pursuing the benefits they need and deserve.
At Burge & Burge, we understand the enormous toll a workplace injury takes on workers and their families, and we are committed to providing strong legal guidance and moral support during this difficult time. Our attorneys have several decades of experience standing up for workers in Homewood, Birmingham, and surrounding Alabama communities. We have an in-depth understanding of the complexities of the workers’ compensation process, and we work closely with our clients to help them recover benefits.
Our lawyers also have extensive experience with personal injury claims, which can often result from a third party who may have been responsible for a workplace injury. And we help clients with Social Security disability claims as well. In addition, one of our major areas of focus for many years has been FELA claims that result from railroad worker injuries. Our depth of knowledge with all of these areas of law gives our clients the best chance to recover maximum compensation for their work-related injuries.
Obtaining Workers’ Compensation in Homewood, AL
Although some industries are clearly more dangerous than others, every worker encounters some risk of getting hurt on the job. When that happens, workers’ comp is usually the first available avenue for recovering compensation.
Most Alabama employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, and assuming your employer does, you should be entitled to benefits which may include:
- Medical Expenses: Reasonable and necessary medical costs, including anticipated future medical expenses.
- Temporary Total Disability: Compensation for a percentage of your wages when you are unable to work for an extended period of time.
- Permanent Partial or Total Disability: Lifetime benefits if you are unable to work again or return to your previous job.
- Miscellaneous: Reimbursement for mileage to and from approved medical appointments, vocational training for a new position if you cannot go back to your previous job, and funeral and burial expenses if you have a loved one who was killed on the job.
If you are having any kind of difficulty at all obtaining these benefits, our attorneys are here to help guide you through the process and fight for the compensation you are entitled to.
Homewood, AL Third Party Workplace Injury Claims
Workplace accidents are often far more complicated events than they may seem like at first. For example, you may have gotten hurt while you were working with some heavy machinery and assumed that the only way to get covered for your injury was through workers’ compensation. But when the case is looked at closer, it turns out that the seller of the machinery failed to properly warn its customers of the hazard which caused the injury. In a situation like this, it might be possible to bring a product liability claim against the manufacturer or distributor of the dangerous product.
Here are a few other examples of outside parties that could be responsible for a workplace injury:
- Subcontractors: In some workplaces, there are subcontractors that regularly do work alongside employees. This is particularly common on construction job sites. If one of these contractors or subcontractors causes a workplace accident, the injured worker may be able to bring a personal injury lawsuit directly against the party that was responsible.
- Vehicle Drivers: If an employee is driving off-site, such as to make a delivery or transport materials and another vehicle crashes into them, they may be able to bring an auto accident claim against the driver that caused the accident.
- Outside Property Owners: If an employee is on the job and gets hurt because of a dangerous condition on a property that is owned and managed by someone other than their employer, it might be possible to bring a premises liability claim against the owner or manager.
There are numerous scenarios like these in which someone other than the employer could be responsible for a work-related injury. We will thoroughly analyze your case and examine all of the potential contributing factors to determine if there are legal avenues available for which to file a personal injury lawsuit. If so, you could recover damages not only for direct economic costs such as medical bills and lost wages, but also for noneconomic losses such as physical and emotional pain-and-suffering and diminished quality of life.
Social Security Disability Claims
There are some instances when a Homewood, AL workers’ compensation claim is legitimately denied because the injury was not work-related or there was another valid reason. If there is no avenue for a third-party personal injury lawsuit after a workers’ comp denial, you might still qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
There are two types of benefits available through Social Security – Social Security Disability (SSD) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The main difference between the two is that SSD is merit-based while SSI is needs-based. Like workers’ compensation, the Social Security disability claims process is extremely complicated, and approximately 70% of claimants are denied in their initial application. Our lawyers can look at your case to see if you qualify for benefits through Social Security, and we will work closely with you to help get you approved the first time you apply.
If you are a Homewood, AL railroad worker who got injured on the job, your injury does not fall under the purview of the workers’ compensation system. All railroad worker injuries are covered by the Federal Employer Liability Act (FELA). FELA claims work more like personal injury claims in that you must prove negligence on the part of your employer, but if you win the case, you are eligible to recover both economic and noneconomic damages.
There are a lot of complexities involved with FELA claims, and it is very important to work with attorneys who are heavily focused on this area of the law with the proven ability to recover compensation for their clients. At Burge & Burge, we have many years of experience handling FELA claims, and we have a successful track record standing up for railroad workers from all over the country.
Contact a Skilled and Knowledgeable Homewood, AL Workers Compensation Attorney
If you have suffered a workplace injury or illness in Alabama, Burge & Burge is here to help. For a free consultation and case assessment with one of our experienced attorneys, message us online or call our office today at 205-251-9000. We look forward to serving you!