January 30, 2015

Do I need an Experienced South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Attorney?


“I would like to address the question of “why hire a lawyer if you’ve been injured on the job?” Why would it be in your best interest to get an experienced lawyer to help you? Please note that every person’s situation is different. You may have your own reasons about why you decided that you want to have a lawyer to help you with your case, but I can review some common reasons why people hire a qualified attorney.
The first issue to address is compensation rate. Your compensation rate is the basis for every monetary benefit that you receive for a work injury, whether it be your weekly disability benefit, or your recovery at the completion of your case for impairment or disability. What most insurance companies will do, is simply take a 40 hour work week, obtain your hourly wage, and will calculate your wages based on your hourly wage times 40 hours a week. They will use this as the average weekly wage. Your compensation rate will be two-thirds of this figure. In many cases, they fail to look at other factors that are supposed to be considered when calculating your compensation rate. One factor is overtime. Your overtime wages should be included in your wages calculation. Bonuses that you have been paid should be included in your compensation rate. Whether or not you work more than one job at the time that you were injured should also be included. If you had more than one job, then your wages from all of your employers are supposed to be considered to determine what your weekly compensation rate should be.
Another reason to have an experienced lawyer is your medical treatment. It is important to avoid the mistake that many people commit, in that they settle their cases based solely on the impairment rating which has been assigned by the insurance company’s doctor. That being the case, the Joye Law Firm will review the impairment rating that has been assigned by the authorized doctor in every case, and then your attorney will make a determination of whether he or she feels that the impairment rating is overly conservative under the American Medical Association’s Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment. If it does, then your attorney will schedule an independent medical evaluation with a well-respected doctor of his choice. The Joye Law Firm will consider scheduling an independent medical evaluation in every workers’ compensation case that they handle in order to gain leverage in obtaining as fair of a recovery as possible for your permanent impairment.”