Workers’ Compensation for Brain Injuries
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Suffering a brain injury on the job can be devastating. The long-term and life-changing consequences are overwhelmingly unpredictable. Brain injuries can lead to tragic circumstances such as ongoing post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, memory loss, physical impairments, and cognitive deficits. The steep costs of medical care can quickly lead to financial distress. Some brain injuries are especially troubling because they can be “invisible.”
This means the extent of the damage cannot be diagnosed because it doesn’t appear in medical tests and there are no visible signs such as cuts or bruises. Diagnosis can be complicated depending on the type of brain injury. This can create serious problems for workers’ confronting a rigid workers’ compensation structure that calls for filings every time additional medical treatments are needed.
If you or a loved one suffers a brain injury at work, a workers’ compensation lawyer can be your most valuable advocate. Ramsay Law Firm, P.A. is dedicated to helping workers in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Brain Injury Statistics in North Carolina
There are many types of brain injuries without a specific prognosis of the amount of time needed for recovery. For example, the progress to recover from Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) can fluctuate. It has been reported that 85 percent of people with TBI suffer problems that are eventually resolved, but the remaining 15 percent can have lasting difficulties. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 2.8 million Americans report a traumatic brain injury each year.
56,000 people die from complications due to the injury. Those who survive, recover slowly, and may end up having lost senses of smell and taste, or with disrupted sleep problems, and can’t seem to be able to do their previous job anymore. Such a level of unpredictability as to the medical needs and lingering physical afflictions are likely to have a significant financial impact.
Paying for mounting medical costs of the multiple medical complications rooted in the injury can become a burden. Employers often ignore dangerous conditions or create dangers and fail to provide the equipment needed for safety reasons. If your sense is that your injuries will require long term care, expensive medications, and your doctor doesn’t have a definitive answer on the extent of complications from the injury, then talking to an experienced brain injury attorney can be a critical decision.
Filing for On-the-Job Brain Injuries in Charlotte, NC
The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act can be difficult to navigate without an attorney. This is because workers who suffer injuries under the Workers’ Compensation benefits for work-related injuries lose their ability to sue the employer for negligence in causing the same injuries.
However, lawsuits against other third parties responsible for the injuries are not prohibited if a workers’ compensation claim is filed. These are referred to as “third-party claims” because the lawsuit is filed against someone other than the employer who is responsible for the injury. The third party is deemed liable for the medical expenses, lost wages, pain, and suffering, and other damages paid under the workers’ compensation system.
Moreover, a worker who chooses to file a workers’ compensation claim must be cautious before accepting a settlement offer from the employer’s insurance company. Insurance companies often offer attractive lump sum financial settlements before full recovery is achieved. There are significant ways a lawyer can help injured workers prevent bad decisions at the point of negotiating an agreement. This is especially important for settlements on inconclusive brain injury diagnoses.
Why You Need a Charlotte Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Recognizing early on if there is a potential negligence claim against someone other than the employer is of critical importance and a lawyer can help you navigate this process. Understanding the implications of what is known as “subrogation” is vital. Subrogation is the legal term indicating that the employer’s insurance carrier can pursue legal actions against third parties responsible for causing the injury.
Since the worker can sue the third-party, a misinformed decision as to your position in that lawsuit can have disastrous consequences. You should look into a proactive professional with a track record in handling your claim.
Our law firm is committed to serving workers in the community of Charlotte and the neighboring suburbs who suffer brain injuries. We are known for our dependable and result-oriented dedication to protect and uphold our workers’ legal rights. It’s important to talk to a seasoned attorney before electing to file workers’ compensation in North Carolina.
Call our Charlotte brain injury attorneys to learn more about how we can help you file a workers’ compensation claim at (704) 376-1616.