If you are hurt on the job, you are entitled to a system of complex, overlapping benefits that can make your head spin. The insurance companies know this, and they count on people walking away from their claims just because it is too complicated to know what to do. Don’t let that happen to you—if you have been hurt on the job you are entitled to understand what benefits you do and do not qualify for, whether it is medical care, wage replacement, job retraining, or a lump sum award for a permanent loss of body function.
If you have any questions about what to do if you have been hurt on the job, give us a call. Remember: There is never a charge to have your rights explained to you.
Personal injury claims usually involve confusion about what insurance applies, how to get coverage, who pays for medical treatment, and other pressing matters. If injuries are significant or likely to be permanent, a whole new layer of anxiety creeps in. Insurance companies are quick to move in and make “suggestions” about how they can “help” you if you have been in a crash. A word to the wise: The insurance company isn’t concerned about closing the claim fairly. They just want the claim closed. Wouldn’t it be better to close the claim on terms that don’t leave you up nights wondering whether the insurance company really had your best interest at heart?
If you have any questions about what to do if you have been hurt in an accident, give us a call. Remember: There is never a charge to have your rights explained to you.
Social Security Disability
Social Security is a public social safety net for the disabled. If you are unable to work because of injury or illness for an extended time, you may be entitled to Social Security benefits. Claims can move slowly, so it is important to start the process if you think you may be eligible. You can do this yourself by visiting your local Social Security office. If you feel that you need help with your claim, please feel free to call. There is no charge to have the law explained to you.
Defense Base Act
We help overseas military defense contractors with claims for benefits under the Defense Base Act.
War zone contractors face hazards that most other workers never dream of. Working in hostile military zones presents special dangers (there’s even a legal doctrine for it–the “Zone of Special Danger,” which I posted about here: Doug’s Zone of Special Danger in New Hampshire Bar newsletter. and here: Doug’s NOLO piece on Zone of Special Danger.)
The Defense Base Act (DBA) compensates civilian employees working under government contracts on U.S. Military bases abroad. The DBA is a complicated federal benefit system that is administered by the U.S. Department of Labor. If you were hurt working in Iraq or Afghanistan, or on any other U.S. military base abroad, you may be covered under the DBA. If so, you must understand your rights carefully in order to receive the benefits to which you are entitled. And unfortunately, you can’t count on AIG or CNA or Travelers to look out for you. Especially when it comes to calculating your Average Weekly Wage properly: Doug’s NOLO piece on Average Weekly Wage, overseas labor market surveys, and making sure you get the benefits you should
Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation claims apply to people injured in maritime settings. By extension, the Longshore act also applies to various other non-maritime workers (civilian contractors hurt on U.S. military bases overseas, nonappropriated fund instrumentalities act workers, people who work in military exchange stores, and so on). Longshore claims are unique in their remedies and procedures, and in some cases you can have both a state workers’ compensation claim and a Longshore claim at the same time.
If you have been hurt and think that you may have a Longshore claim, please call. Remember: There is never a charge to have your rights explained to you.