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Columbia, SC Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

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    Workers’ Compensation insurance is provided by employers to help injured workers. If you were hurt at work, filing for Workers’ Compensation could be your best bet at recovering lost wages and medical expenses.

    Filing with the help of an attorney can avoid denials and help ensure that the insurance company has enough information to pay your claim. If there are issues, your lawyers can also appeal the case and fight to get you the benefits you need.

    For a free case review, call (803) 451-4000 to speak with the Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Burriss Ridgeway Injury Lawyers.

    What is Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Columbia, SC?

    Workers’ Compensation is an insurance system designed to cover injured workers by providing them with a portion of their lost wages and benefits to pay for medical bills. Suing an employer can be difficult as there are many laws and rules that get in the way – and often, an injury might not actually be your employer’s fault. Workers’ Compensation gives workers a route to compensation without needing to prove who was at fault, and it can even pay damages if you accidentally caused your own injuries.

    Who Qualifies for Workers’ Compensation in Columbia, SC

    Most employees within South Carolina should qualify for Workers’ Compensation coverage. The law requires most employers with four or more employees to provide their employees with Workers’ Compensation benefits.

    Exceptions to Workers’ Compensation

    Workers’ Compensation insurance is not necessary for certain industries or for certain types of workers. Anyone working for the federal government is not covered by a South Carolina Workers’ Compensation policy. Employers in South Carolina do not need Workers’ Compensation coverage for casual employees, agricultural workers, railroad workers, and other specific employees.

    Additionally, owner-operator truckers, independent contractors, and owners of companies are typically not covered, and companies with a total payroll under $3,000 per year also do not need to cover employees.

    Common Workplace Injuries in Columbia, SC

    Injuries at work can happen in many different ways, but the following are some of the most common injuries our Workers’ Compensation lawyers can help with:

    Slip and Fall Injuries

    Falls are common on slippery surfaces, rocky terrain, or floors covered with litter or other debris. Employers should work to keep job sites safe for employers, but slip and falls and trip and falls still happen in many different situations.

    Vehicle/Transportation Accidents

    If you drive around as part of your job, you are vulnerable to auto accidents. This could involve those who drive for a living, such as bus drivers and truck drivers. It can also involve people who drive from job site to job site or who have mobile operations. However, accidents during your commute to or from work are generally not covered.

    Falling Materials

    Dropped tools and materials at a construction site, collapsing structures, boxes falling in a warehouse, or other falling materials can seriously injure workers. Depending on what fell on you, your injuries could even be life-threatening.

    Repetitive Stress Injuries

    Repetitive stress injuries are common in many different injuries. Tasks like typing, steering, or working on an assembly line are often responsible for many repetitive stress injuries that can interfere with your ability to work and require surgery, rehabilitation, and replacement wages.

    Workplace Violence

    Often, intentional acts of violence are not covered by Workers’ Compensation insurance. This might give you grounds to sue your employer instead of filing through this system. In any case, compensation should be available to you for instances of violence or abuse in the workplace.

    Fires, Explosions, and Electrocutions

    Fires can break out in any structure or office. On the other hand, explosions are rarer and are typically limited to factories, especially those dealing with hazardous chemicals. Electrocution is common on construction sites, but faulty wiring, dangerous electronics, and other electrocution hazards can appear at any job.

    Occupational Illness (Physical or Mental Health)

    Long-term health issues can arise from certain work, especially work involving exposure to chemicals and materials. Asbestos, silica, and other materials can lead to lung disease, while other chemicals can lead to cancer and other illness. Mental health issues can also arise in certain fields, especially if you witnessed a traumatic event or disaster at your job.

    Wrongful Death

    If a loved one was killed at work, Workers’ Compensation should provide for your family. There are special rules for these cases and what Workers’ Compensation insurance provides after a workplace death.

    What to Do if You Are Hurt at Work in Columbia, SC

    Taking steps to get yourself the medical care you need and to round up evidence for your potential case is important after a workplace accident. Follow the following steps:

    Seek Medical Attention

    Workers’ Compensation should cover emergency medical care for a work injury even if a later claim for benefits is rejected. If you were hurt at work, get to the hospital and get the care you need before returning to work. Your employer might prevent you from getting care or leaving the job site, but caring for yourself is vital. Call our attorneys if you have trouble getting emergency care.

    Report the Accident to Your Employer

    Your employer accepts the report that starts your Workers’ Compensation claim, so it is vital to tell them about your accident. They should have forms for you to fill out detailing when the accident happened, how it happened, and what injuries you sustained. This is the first step in filing your case, so make sure you provide full information.

    Your supervisor might have already reported the accident, but you need to report the accident as well in most cases to start the Workers’ Compensation process.

    File for Workers’ Compensation Benefits

    If your employer fails to file your claim or delays filing, contact a lawyer immediately and file your claim yourself with their help. You might also need to file additional documents and forms if your employer tries to reject your claim or deny that the accident happened.

    Collect Evidence of the Accident

    Getting evidence of how the accident happened, how you were injured, when the accident happened, and where it happened will be necessary to prove your claim. Getting the names and contact info of witnesses to the accident can also help you prove your case later. Any photos and physical evidence you have – e.g., the machinery or gear that injured you – will also be important. You will also need your medical records, so make sure to get copies of those to bring to your attorney.

    Contact Our Columbia, SC Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Today

    For a free review of your case, call the Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Burriss Ridgeway Injury Lawyers today at (803) 451-4000.