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Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation Lawyers

Workers’ Compensation coverage is often a contentious subject for employees across New Jersey. When someone is hurt on the job, they need to know that their medical bills will be paid. Unfortunately, this system is a bit more complicated than many workers realize. Using a Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation lawyer helps injured workers and their families recover maximum compensation, ensures that coverage is provided, and holds the insurance company or employer accountable when necessary. Additionally, we serve clients throughout the following areas:

-Cherry Hill
-Mount Laurel
-Burlington County
-Camden County
-South Jersey

What Should I Do After a Work Accident?

Work accidents must be reported as soon as possible. When someone is injured, a supervisor needs to know about the accident and generate an accident report. Reporting the accident immediately helps avoid any delays. Some workers believe they have not been hurt badly. These employees often try to go back to work because they think their injury will go away. This is not always the case, and the worker’s injuries could worsen over time. When reporting an accident, the supervisor will likely advise the employee to go to the doctor.

Although it is obvious that injured workers should seek medical attention, many injuries are never reported. Workers have 90 days to report their injuries before benefits are nullified. It is important to remember that medical treatment creates a record of the injury, when it occurred, and its severity. Injured employees should also contact a lawyer as soon as possible if their coverage has not been provided appropriately or they believe they cannot file a report.

For Which Types of Workers’ Compensation Coverage am I Eligible for?

Disability Insurance

When injured workers receive Workers’ Compensation benefits, they can receive the following types of coverage:

Temporary partial disability. This benefit is payable to employees who are able to return to work but earn less than their pre-injury wages. It is payable at two-thirds of the difference between what the employee earned at the time of the injury and their current earnings.

Temporary total disability. Temporary total disability is provided when the employee misses more than seven days of work. These benefits continue until the employee is cleared to go back on the job or told they cannot improve any more. Under this benefit schedule, the worker receives 70 percent of their salary.

Permanent partial disability. Permanent partial disability is paid on a schedule published by the State of New Jersey. The disability schedule helps insurance companies and lawyers value the worker’s disability. Employees in this category may have the capacity to work, but they no longer have the same earning potential.

Permanent total disability. Permanent total disability is paid at 70 percent of the worker’s weekly wages. Someone who is permanently disabled and unable to work will be paid this benefit as if it were a pension. The payments last for 450 weeks and continue if the worker is still disabled.

Death Certificate

Death benefits. Death benefits paid by Workers’ Compensation include $3,500 for burial and final costs under New Jersey law. The spouse and dependent children of the deceased employee are considered dependents, and they are paid 70 percent of the worker’s weekly wage. Dependent children receive a portion of these benefits until age 18, or age 23 if they are full-time students.

A Workers’ Compensation lawyer should be contacted if benefits have not been provided or have been improperly calculated after a work accident.

Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation Lawyers

Can I Choose My Doctor?

Employees in New Jersey may choose from a list of medical providers covered by their employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance. In New Jersey, however, the employer can choose a specific doctor for the injured worker. Workers may not be forced to go to a specific physician initially, but other doctors may be selected by the insurance company as coverage is provided. If the employee goes to another doctor without permission from the insurance provider, their medical bills will likely not be paid, with the exception of emergencies or gross misconduct on the part of the employer or insurer.

Will I Be Asked to Submit to an Independent Medical Examination?

An independent medical examination (IME) is often used by the insurance company to show that the employee is ready to return to work and disability payments should cease. Insurance companies often order these examinations to avoid paying further benefits. In extreme cases, the worker might be surveilled by a private investigator hired by the insurance company hoping to show that the worker is lying about the extent of their injuries.

Injured workers should be honest and explain how their injuries impacted their daily lives and work. They should detail every injury, everything that has changed, and all the things they can no longer do. This goes up to and includes mental trauma and chronic pain that makes sleep or concentration difficult. If necessary, the injured worker can make a list of all the things to share with the doctor before going to the examination. The employee should bring all medical records, imaging results, and statements from other doctors to the appointment.

What Happens if I Cannot Go Back to Work?

Although the employee can stay on Workers’ Compensation as they recover, there may come a point where their doctor believes they cannot improve any further. The doctor will note that the employee has reached their maximum level of improvement. These workers can seek new jobs with their current employer, or they can move into a new industry. Because these employees must change jobs, they are eligible for vocational rehabilitation that is offered through the New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS). The DVRS provides the following services for injured workers:

  • Job training
  • Educational support
  • Resume and interview assistance
  • Support for startup businesses
  • Job placement

Those who cannot return to work should request this level of support. If support is not provided, a Workers’ Compensation lawyer will help the employee receive the assistance they deserve under New Jersey Workers’ Compensation law.

Can I Settle After Filing a Workers’ Compensation or Disability Claim?

Workers’ Compensation form

Employees may believe that they cannot settle their Workers’ Compensation claims because it is impossible to know precisely how much their injuries will cost. The system in New Jersey, however, allows workers to settle their cases in one of two circumstances.

An order approving settlement is used when there is no concern about causation. The accident happened, and the employee was hurt. The employee, however, may prefer to receive a lump-sum settlement in lieu of weekly payments. This means the employee is agreeing not to go to trial. A Workers’ Compensation lawyer will negotiate the value of the settlement with the insurance company given medical records, doctor’s statements, and even an IME to show how disabled the worker has become. An order approving settlement can also be reviewed for up to two years after the settlement is reached.

A Section 20 settlement is often used when there are concerns about the cause of the accident or where it occurred. For example, an itinerant teacher must drive from one school to another to teach classes. The insurance provider may claim that a car accident involving the teacher is not covered because they were not at a worksite, and this binding settlement closes the case with no opportunity for review.

Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation Lawyers

Can My Lawyer Help with an Appeal?

When a worker or their family is not awarded benefits, appeals can be heard in an informal hearing with an administrative law judge. The New Jersey Division of Workers’ Compensation will host these hearings, and a judge can recommend that the case be settled. If the case cannot be settled, a formal hearing can be held with the same judge ending in a legally binding judgment. If the judge rules against the worker or their family, a Workers’ Compensation lawyer can argue the case before the New Jersey Supreme Court, Appellate Division.

Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen, LLC Assist Injured Workers

Speak to the Mount Laurel Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen, LLC when you have questions about your Workers’ Compensation coverage or need assistance with death benefits. We are ready to do what it takes to obtain the benefits you deserve. Call us at 856-751-7676 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Mount Laurel, Cherry Hill, Trenton, and Vineland, New Jersey, as well as Trevose, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

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856-751-7676 16000 Commerce Parkway
Suite C
Mt Laurel Township, NJ 08054 Monday - Friday | 8am - 5pm

856-751-7676 1913 Greentree Rd
Suite C
Cherry Hill, NJ 08003 Monday - Friday | 8am - 5pm

856-751-7676 1234 Bridgetown Pike
Suite 200
Feasterville-Trevose, PA 19053 Monday - Friday | 8am - 5pm

Trenton, NJ Office
Vineland, NJ Office