Most people have never been injured at work to an extent that they need to file for workers’ compensation, which means a lot people are unfamiliar with the steps you should take after a work injury. If you’ve followed our advice and hired a workers’ compensation attorney to help file your claim and fight for your rights, you’re starting off on the right path. Now that you have an attorney, it’s important to ask them the right questions to help your case get off on the right foot. Today, we share five questions you should ask your workers’ compensation attorney.
Tell me about your experience handling cases similar to mine.
OK, this first question is technically a statement, not a question, but it gets your point across. You want to find out about your attorney’s experience so you feel comfortable that they are the right lawyer for your case. If they don’t have extensive experience, or they only handle certain types of claims, they may not be the best fit for your situation. You want to leave the meeting feeling confident that your attorney has the background and experience to handle your claim.
Do you think I have a valid claim?
This question is important because you want an attorney who believes in your claim. Great attorneys will not only tell you if they think you have a valid claim, but they’ll also explain if they see any potential obstacles to being awarded a claim. Some workers’ compensation attorneys get a bigger payday when you win your case. Since they have a vested interest in getting you the best claim possible, they should be honest if they feel that your claim request is likely to be denied.
How do you see this process playing out?
This is similar to the above question, but it goes beyond simply asking about the validity of your claim. You’ll want to find an attorney who can clearly explain how they believe the claim process will play out. They should be able to talk you through your claim, explain the next steps, tell you what they will be doing for you in the coming days and weeks, and put your mind at ease about the whole process. They won’t be able to give you specific details or make promises at this point, but an experienced workers’ compensation attorney should be able to walk you through some basic steps.
How will we communicate throughout the claim process?
This question is important because it helps to set expectations about communication throughout the process. Some people want an update every few days, while other people only want to hear from their attorney if there has been new developments in their case. Not only will it help you manage communication expectations, but many attorneys bill for the time they spend working on your case, and sending a text, email or having a phone call all takes time. The more they communicate with you, the more it may cost you when all’s said and done, so it’s a topic worth broaching at the outset.
What do you need from me?
Filing and claiming workers’ compensation is a delicate process that involves documenting numerous details and dates surrounding your case. You are going to need copies of injury reports, information from your doctor or independent medical exam, and much more. Ask your attorney what other information they need from you, and what they may need in the future so you can stay on top of everything you need to do on your end.
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