If you suffered a workplace injury, you know that you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. However, it is not uncommon for an employer’s insurance company to deny your claim, no matter how valid it is. Of course, you have the right to appeal this decision and can file an application for adjudication of your claim, which can ultimately go to a hearing and be heard by a workers’ compensation judge. In many cases, injured employees and insurance companies are able to resolve this on together, with legal assistance, to reach a mutually agreeable settlement. Before you accept a settlement, it is important to know how it can impact you and whether or not it adequately covers your injury.
Should I Settle?
The answer to this question depends on a variety of factors, including the severity of your condition, whether you are likely to recover or experience any lasting limitations, your medical evidence, your financial situation, how much money is being offered, and whether or not you can wait. If you and your workers’ compensation attorney determine that the settlement is enough and you need the money as soon as possible, it might be wise to accept it, even if it is a little lower than what you were aiming for. This will help you avoid the time it takes to endure a workers’ compensation hearing.
That said, if the insurance company is claiming that you are not as disabled as you say that you are and you have the evidence to back it up, it is well worth it to take your case to court to convince a workers’ compensation judge that you deserve to be awarded more benefits.
Other Factors You Should Consider
A number of other factors should also be part of the decision-making process when it comes to settling. This includes:
- The value of your claim: Without an experienced workers’ compensation attorney, it would be rather difficult to have an accurate idea of what your claim is worth and, without understanding its value, you cannot know if a settlement is worth accepting. An offer might seem like a lot of money to you, but if you have not calculated all of your current medical expenses, future medical expenses, and lost wages, then you are taking a blind leap of faith and potentially accepting far less than what you deserve.
- The nature of your condition: If you have not yet reached maximum medical improvement, it is possible that your condition can still change and even worsen, which could mean that settling your claim might very well be a terrible idea.
- Know what it means to settle: This is another area where your lawyer’s advice will come in handy. Many injured workers do not entirely understand what settling means. While the weekly checks will come to an end and be replaced with a lump sum, the insurance company will likely still cover your medical treatment. Make sure you understand the terms of a possible settlement and how it will impact you.
Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Santa Ana
At Ufkes & Bright, our workers’ compensation attorneys in Santa Ana have been representing injured workers for over 50 years. If you sustained a workplace injury, it is imperative that you seek the legal help that you need to obtain the workers’ compensation benefits to which you are entitled. Turn to a law firm that can provide a personal approach to your case and successful big firm results.