Were you injured on the job in Waynesboro, GA? The bills can start to add up quickly. An experienced Waynesboro workers’ compensation lawyer at Hawk Law Group can help you file a workers’ compensation claim for medical bills and lost wages. We can also help you understand your rights under Georgia personal injury laws.
For over three decades, injured workers in the CSRA have turned to our legal team for the help they need. We’ve helped those clients recover millions of dollars.
Table of Contents
How Can Hawk Law Group Help With a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Waynesboro?
Even when you do everything possible to stay safe on the job, a work-related injury or illness is always possible. As an injured worker, you shouldn’t have to worry about fighting with the insurance company to get the benefits that are rightfully yours.
Our Waynesboro personal injury lawyers at Hawk Law Group have been fighting for people like you for decades. Collectively, we have over 71 years of experience in this area of law. We’ve also recovered some of the largest settlements and verdicts in the CSRA.
Here’s what our lawyers can do for you:
- Investigate to find out who was responsible for your injuries
- Help you file your initial workers’ compensation claim
- Defend you if your claim is denied, delayed, or undervalued
- Protect you if your doctor tries to force you back to work before you’re ready
- Determine whether you’re eligible to file a third-party lawsuit for additional benefits
- Negotiate with the insurance companies to maximize your compensation award
Still have questions? Call our Waynesboro personal injury attorneys for a free consultation today.
How Common Are Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses in Waynesboro, GA?
Nationwide, private employers reported over 2.7 million nonfatal work injuries and illnesses to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in 2020.
State-level data for Georgia shows that 78,100 work injuries and illnesses were reported in 2019. 41,600 of those cases were severe, resulting in missed days at work or job transfers and restrictions.
What is My Waynesboro Workers’ Compensation Case Worth?
Most injured workers turn to workers’ compensation for benefits after a work injury. Under Georgia state law, employers are required to purchase workers’ compensation if they have three or more employees.
Workers’ compensation laws provide specific benefits. However, not everyone with a work-related injury or illness will automatically receive the same amount. The value of your claim depends on a few different factors.
Relevant factors in valuing your workers’ compensation matter include:
- The duration of your recovery
- The cost of your medical treatment
- Whether you’re totally or partially unable to work
- Your income prior to sustaining the illness or injury
Georgia workers are entitled to receive ⅔ of their average weekly wages prior to becoming disabled. However, Georgia state law caps those weekly benefits at $675 per week.
What Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits Are Available to Injured Workers in Georgia?
Workers’ compensation benefits are designed to provide fast relief for injured workers. However, they only compensate for economic damages–which are your financial losses.
Workers’ compensation benefits in Georgia include:
- Reasonable medical expenses
- Disability benefits to cover part of your lost wages
- Benefits for loss of the use of a body part
- Vision or hearing loss benefits
- Death benefits for survivors of fatal work accident victims
The exact benefits you’re entitled to receive will depend on the nature of your disability.
Cash Disability Benefits
When you’re hurt because of something at work, you’re entitled to a weekly wage replacement check after missing more than seven days of work. If you miss more than 21 days, you’re also paid for the first seven days of disability.
However, there are different types of disability benefits. The type you’ll receive depends on whether you’re totally unable to work and whether you’ll recover.
You may be entitled to claim:
- Temporary total disability benefits
- Temporary partial disability benefits
- Permanent partial disability benefits
- Permanent total disability benefits
At various times during your recovery, you’ll visit your doctor for checkups. Your doctor will evaluate your impairment level. That impairment level will determine the amount of your weekly check.
For example, if your doctor releases you to work for “light duty,” you can continue to receive workers’ comp benefits to make up the difference in your earnings before and after the accident.
Can I Sue My Employer for Damages?
Because of the statewide cap on workers’ comp benefits, many people don’t take home their full wages while recovering from a work injury. That can create financial problems. In some cases, you could be entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit–but only if someone other than your employer was liable.
Although you can’t sue your employer for damages, you can sue a negligent third party who was at least partly responsible for your injuries.
That might include:
- Property owners
- At-fault drivers if you were hurt in a work-related car accident
- Manufacturers of defective work equipment
- Someone responsible for maintaining work vehicles
If you can file a lawsuit, you can recover damages in addition to your workers’ comp benefits. Those damages may include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- 100% of your lost earnings
- Lost earning capacity
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish, anxiety, and depression
- Diminished quality of life
- Loss of consortium
Our lawyers are committed to helping you maximize your financial recovery. Our experienced Waynesboro workers’ compensation attorneys can help you gain an understanding of your legal rights, so call our conveniently located offices for a free consultation today.
Can I Claim Workers’ Compensation If I’m Being Blamed for Getting Hurt on the Job in Georgia?
Shared fault isn’t an issue when it comes to filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. Because workers’ comp is a no-fault system in Georgia, you can receive benefits even if you caused your accident.
However, a modified comparative negligence rule applies if you’re eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit. You can only seek compensation from a negligent third party if you were less than 50% responsible for the accident.
We’ll Fight to Recover Compensation for All of Your Workplace Injuries and Illnesses
At Hawk Law Group, we regularly represent clients who have suffered:
- Broken bones
- Respiratory illnesses
- Lung damage
- Eye injuries and vision loss
- Musculoskeletal disorders
- Repetitive stress injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome
- Hearing damage
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Chest injuries
- Back injuries
- Crushing injuries
- Amputation injury
- Catastrophic injuries
- Wrongful death of a loved one
Do you have questions about your rights? Call our law firm for a free initial consultation today.
What Causes Most Work Accidents in Waynesboro, Georgia?
Our lawyers help workers who have been injured in a variety of ways–whether you slipped and fell in an office building or sustained injuries in a construction site accident.
Across all industries, research shows that the most common causes of workplace injuries include:
- Overexertion caused by excessive or repetitive physical activities, including lifting, pushing, or carrying objects
- Slips, trips, and falls
- Contact with objects and work equipment
Of course, it’s also important to understand the root cause of these accidents. The following are common causes of workplace accidents:
- Dangerous property conditions
- Failure to follow OSHA safety regulations
- Failure to use protective safety equipment
- Lack of fall protection
- Unsafe or defective work equipment
- Failure to properly train, supervise, and screen employees
- Communication failures between management, employees, and co-workers
- Negligent security
There could be other causes not listed above.
We Can Help Recover Compensation for All of Your On-the-Job Injuries
Our lawyers handle all types of workers’ compensation claims in Georgia. That includes injuries and illnesses sustained because of:
Slip and fall accidents
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Crane accidents
- Forklift accidents
- Scaffolding accidents
- Injuries caused by heavy lifting
- Construction site accidents
- Manufacturing accidents
- Factory accidents
- Exposure to live electricity or electrical wires
- Roof and ladder falls
- Heavy machinery accidents
- Fires and explosions
- Electrocution accidents
- Injuries caused by falling objects
- Workplace violence
You don’t have to prove negligence to recover workers’ compensation benefits. As long as your injury was sustained in the course of employment, you can file a claim. In fact, you’re entitled to benefits even if you were injured outside of your normal worksite–as long as your injury or illness was work-related.
How Long Do I Have to File a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Georgia?
State laws limit the amount of time you have to take action after sustaining a work-related disability. You should report your injury to your supervisor as soon as possible. If you wait longer than 30 days, you could lose your right to benefits.
The personal injury statute of limitations in Georgia is two years. To pursue legal action against a negligent third party, you’ll have to file a personal injury lawsuit within two years of your injury or illness.
Contact a Waynesboro Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for a Free Consultation
A work injury or illness can take you off the job for weeks or months. It’s critical that you get every dollar you deserve. To explore your legal rights and options, call a Waynesboro workers’ compensation lawyer at Hawk Law Group for a free case review today.