Even a relatively minor back injury can be debilitating, rendering a worker unable to perform his or her regular duties for days or even weeks. A more serious back injury, such as a herniated disc in the cervical or lumbar spine, can be even more devastating. If you or a family member has suffered a back injury at work, you need to talk to an attorney who can help you assert your legal rights in a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall has an experienced team of New Jersey back injury lawyers who regularly advocate on behalf of workers who are dealing with the effects of accidents and illnesses.
The first step in any workers’ compensation case is for the employee to notify the employer – usually a supervisor or someone in the personnel office – that he or she has been hurt. Workers’ compensation claims can result from both accidental injuries and work-related illnesses, but back injury claims typically happen as a result of an accident rather than an illness. Once the employer has been notified of the employee’s injury, the employer should notify its workers’ compensation insurance company, which should in turn provide paid medical care for the worker from an appropriate physician. Some employers are self-insured for workers’ compensation purposes, in which case the employer is directly responsible for arranging reasonable and necessary medical care for the employee. The employee should not be required to use his or her regular health insurance to see a doctor for a work-related injury. If a dispute arises regarding medical coverage, our back injury attorneys can assist a New Jersey employee with protecting their rights.Types of Disability Benefits
If the employee’s treating physician takes the employee off work due to a back injury, the worker may be entitled to partial replacement wages in the form of temporary total disability benefits. While these payments do not fully replace the worker’s regular wages, they can be very important in avoiding or at least minimizing the serious financial difficulties that can come from an interruption of regular wages due to an injury at work. Once the worker is able to return to work, these payments cease. If the worker is left with some degree of permanent disability, he or she may then seek permanent partial disability benefits. The amount that the worker will receive depends on how much money he or she made before the injury, which impairment rating his or her doctor assigned, and other relevant factors.
Workers’ compensation cases do not require the employee and their New Jersey back injury attorney to prove fault against the employer. All that is required is that the employee demonstrate that the injury was suffered during the course and scope of his or her employment. In this way, workers’ compensation cases are designed to be simpler and more efficient than other types of personal injury cases, such as those arising from car accidents or medical malpractice, but there is a trade-off. The worker is only entitled to paid medical care and certain disability payments. There is no monetary compensation for pain and suffering, nor is there any payment for loss of consortium to the worker’s spouse. Punitive damages are also excluded in workers’ compensation cases.Seek Legal Advice for a Back Injury Claim
Back injuries can take a long time to heal, leaving a worker in pain and off work for an extended period of time. Sometimes a back injury is so severe that the employee is never able to return to gainful employment. If you have been involved in a work-related accident that resulted in a back injury, and you have questions about your legal rights, call the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall at (800) 999-0897 or contact us online to speak with a back injury lawyer in New Jersey. We serve clients in Freehold, New Brunswick, Toms River, Jersey City, Plainfield, Trenton, Newark, Paterson, and the surrounding areas of Monmouth, Middlesex, Ocean, Hudson, Union, Mercer, Essex, and Passaic Counties. There is no charge for a case evaluation, and workers’ compensation cases are handled on a contingency fee contract if they are accepted. In other words, we get paid when your case is settled or a favorable judgment is entered.