New Bedford, MA Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Workers’ Compensation insurance provides benefits for employees who are injured on the job. Financial compensation for both medical expenses and lost income can be pursued. However, in some cases, claimants can have difficulties obtaining the full extent of payment they are owed.
You may have to present a large amount of background information pertaining to your accident and injury when filing a claim. Additionally, your employer’s insurance company may look for opportunities to deny your claim.
After suffering a workplace injury in New Bedford, MA, seek support and guidance from our experienced Workers’ Compensation lawyers at The Law Office of John J. Sheehan by dialing (617) 925-6407.
What Benefits Are Available to Injured Employees in New Bedford, MA?
There are several different types of benefits available to Workers’ Compensation claimants. The benefits awarded in your case can vary depending on the severity of your injury and the effect it has on your ability to work. Any of the following may be pursued:
Total Incapacity Benefits
If your workplace injury prevents you from participating in any work at all, then you may recover total incapacity benefits under Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 152, § 34. These benefits offer compensation for a maximum of 60% of the average weekly wages you earn. Furthermore, they can be awarded for up to three years.
Permanent and Total Incapacity Benefits
Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 152, § 34A mandates that permanent and total incapacity benefits may be sought by injured employees who are permanently unable to perform any sort of work because of their on-the-job injury or illness. Such benefits can compensate you somewhere between 20% and 66% of the average wages you earn per week. Also, they will not expire for as long as you are hurt. You can consult with our Workers’ Compensation attorneys to determine if your are eligible for permanent and total incapacity benefits.
Partial Incapacity Benefits
Partial incapacity benefits are permitted according to Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 152, § 34A. These benefits are offered to injured employees who can no longer perform the type or quantity of work that they previously could. If you are awarded partial incapacity benefits, then you may recover compensation for a maximum of 70% of your weekly earnings.
Specific Injury Benefits
Lastly, as established by Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 152, § 36, specific injury benefits may be awarded to claimants who suffered disfigurement, scarring, or restriction of bodily functions as a result of their workplace injury. These benefits are awarded in the form of a one-time payment.
Common On-the-Job Injuries Sustained by Employees in New Bedford, MA
Workplace accidents can lead to a wide range of painful injuries. Furthermore, such injuries can be suffered by individuals in nearly any occupation. The following are all examples of common injuries caused by on-the-job accidents in New Bedford:
Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries can arise in the form of sprains, strains, and tears. They can affect ligaments, muscles, and tendons in many parts of the body. Those who sustain soft tissue injuries are often seriously debilitated. Accordingly, these injuries typically force victims to refrain from working during their recoveries.
Broken bones are also a common type of harm caused by workplace accidents. These injuries can be highly painful. Furthermore, in severe cases, those who incur broken bones may need to undergo surgical treatment in order for their injuries to properly heal.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries are a common type of injury that can be suffered at work. These injuries usually happen as the result of violent blows to the head. Those who suffer traumatic brain injuries can endure a range of symptoms that substantially restrict their ability to work and function properly.
Furthermore, many victims of workplace accidents suffer burns. These injuries are usually related to fires and explosions that occur on the job. However, burns can also be caused by contact with dangerous chemicals, hot liquids, and hot metal. Employees working on construction sites and in factories are more susceptible so suffering such accidents. Those who suffer burns often require extensive medical treatment.
Spinal Cord Damage
Finally, workplace accidents regularly cause spinal cord damage. There are multiple different types of spinal cord damage that victims can suffer. For example, a workplace accident may cause someone to sustain a vertebral fracture, spinal stenosis, or a herniated disc. Thankfully, if you sustained spinal cord damage on the job, then you may be able to acquire significant compensation for your injury.
What if Your Employer Does Not Carry Workers’ Compensation Insurance in New Bedford, MA?
All employers are required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance for their employees in Massachusetts. If your boss does not carry such coverage, then you may be able to sue them for the damages you are owed. Guidance from our legal team can be very helpful when pursuing financial compensation from an uninsured employer.
Can You Recover Workers’ Compensation Benefits as an Independent Contractor in New Bedford, MA?
A high number of independent contractors are hurt on the job each year in New Bedford. Unfortunately, if you suffered a workplace injury as an independent contractor, then you will not be able to pursue Workers’ Compensation benefits. These benefits are only offered to those who can be classified as employees.
Still, there may be options for pursuing compensation. For example, you may be able to contest your classification as an employee. This may involve analyzing several circumstances surrounding the work you performed such as your boss’s behavioral or financial control over your work.
Additionally, if you were hurt while working as an independent contractor, then you may be able to obtain payment by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the party who caused your accident. Plaintiffs in personal injury lawsuits can obtain certain monetary damages that cannot be recovered through Workers’ Compensation claims.
Contact Our Law Firm for Help with Your Workers’ Compensation Claim in New Bedford, MA
Get help from our experienced Workers’ Compensation attorneys at The Law Office of John J. Sheehan today by calling (617) 925-6407.