At Isaacs & Isaacs personal injury law firm, we want to support hardworking people who’ve suffered an on-the-job injury. We don’t think you should have to fight to get the compensation you need to make ends meet when you have been injured. The sad truth is, no matter how sick or hurt you are, filing a claim for the benefits you are entitled to by law is a complex process which can be a job in itself.
What’s even worse, if you win your claim, Ohio workers’ comp laws allow your employer to appeal the decision. If the company you work for is contesting your claim, they are likely to have an attorney during the appeal process. In order to obtain all the benefits you are entitled to and desperately need, you may be in for a fight.
What Workers Compensation Benefits Are Ohio Workers Eligible For?
- Temporary Total Disability – When your physician determines you cannot work until your health condition improves
- Permanent Partial Disability – If your injury leaves you permanently disabled, but you can still do some kind of work
- Facial Disfigurement – Can get you a lump sum payment of up to $10,000
- Wage Loss Benefits – If you cannot earn as much because of your injury
- Permanent Total Disability – If your injury is so severe you cannot work at all for an indefinite time
- Disabled Workers’ Relief Fund – To make up the difference in your disability payments and cost of living if your payments fall below the state minimum
- VSSR Compensation if you can prove your employer violated a specific safety requirement, you may be eligible for additional compensation
Ohio Workers’ Comp Death Benefits
If a workplace injury leads to death, workers’ compensation pays up to $5,500 in funeral expenses. For family members who were wholly dependent on the deceased worker, workers’ compensation benefits are paid in the following manner:
Surviving Spouse: A surviving spouse receives up to 66 ⅔ of the worker’s income, up to the statewide average weekly wage for life. If the widow/widower remarries, he or she receives two years of benefits in a lump-sum payment, and the case is closed.
Other Dependents: The other dependants receive the payment described above until those dependents
- reach age 18,
- reach age 25, for full-time students, or
- If the dependent is mentally or physically incapacitated, while the disability lasts
What If My Workers’ Comp Claim Is Denied?
Though the process can become more difficult, don’t despair. You have 14 days to file an appeal with the Ohio Industrial Commission. This would be a very good time to seek legal help. If the company you work for is disputing your claim, they will probably have an attorney. But there could be many other reasons why your claim was denied. An experienced attorney could help you by:
- Obtaining substantial medical evidence to back up your claim
- Obtaining evidence and witness statements to prove your injury happened at work
- Representing you at the hearing before the Ohio Industrial Commission
- Ensuring you receive all the benefits you’re eligible for
- Filing a lawsuit against a third party, where necessary
- Defending your claim if your employer appeals your approval
The workers’ comp appeal process is three levels, and at any of these, your employer has a right to also appeal if your claim is allowed. After you file an appeal, the board will schedule a district level hearing within 45 days. You will have a right to submit evidence and call witnesses, and you can expect to be questioned. The commission may want you to be examined by their independent physician prior to the hearing. The hearing will be presided over by an officer of the commission, and the officer will send both you and your employer notice of their decision within seven days. Because workers’ comp in Ohio is so difficult to get if an employer wants to dispute your claim, you are well advised to have an attorney from the start.
Both you and your employer will have a right to appeal the decision to the staff level. Once an appeal is filed, the hearing is again set for within 45 days. The last level of appeal, the commission level, is not guaranteed. If the commission denies the hearing, parties have two months to appeal to the state courts. If the commission agrees to hear the appeal, their decision can still be appealed to the state courts.
How Can I Afford to Hire a Workers’ Compensation Attorney If I’m Broke?
Your Isaacs & Isaacs disability lawyer will represent you on a contingency fee basis. If we don’t get you your money, we don’t get paid! We want to see workers get maximum compensation they are entitled to by law.
Your attorney will be with you throughout the complex process of navigating your claim in the very best way possible. In some cases, a third party may be held liable for your injury, and you would still be eligible for workers’ comp. For instance, if your injury was due to a defective machine or safety device. Your attorney will know when it would be a good idea to file a lawsuit against a third party, as well as filing a claim for Ohio workers’ comp. If your employer contributed to your injury through violating a safety requirement, your attorney would help you to compile the proof necessary to receive additional VSSR Compensation.
Your question should be, how can I afford to file my claim without an attorney. There’s a lot at stake, and hiring a lawyer will assure that you will receive the best possible representation while leaving you free to focus on healing. Let us take the burden off your shoulders while you rebuild your life.
Call 800-800-888 without delay, or fill out our online form for your free consult and claim evaluation with a dedicated and experienced Isaacs & Isaacs Ohio workers’ compensation attorney. You don’t have to face this trouble alone.