Every year, thousands of hard-working people in Eastern Washington are injured while on the job. A work injury could cause a huge disruption to your life—an accident may require extensive medical care and it could keep you off the job for weeks, months or even longer, thereby preventing you from earning a paycheck.
Injured workers have important legal rights. You need to know how to protect yourself after a job-related accident. In this article, our Spokane, WA workplace injury lawyers explain five of the most important things that injured employees need to know about their legal rights.
1. You are Entitled to Professional Medical Care
To start, you have the right to receive competent, professional medical care. Injured workers should always be evaluated by an experienced medical professional after a significant accident. Even if you believe your injuries are only moderate, please be sure to see a doctor. With workplace injuries, it is always better to play it safe.
2. You Have the Right to File a Workers’ Comp Claim
Washington has a mandatory workers’ compensation insurance system. Employers are required to cover almost all of their workers under a no-fault workers’ comp policy. Through a workers’ comp claim, you can recover benefits for the cost of medical care and any lost wages. To be clear, you do not need to prove that your employer was at fault for your accident in order to get benefits.
3. You Can Choose Your Own Physician
In some cases, employers try to pressure injured workers into using a specific doctor. Under state law, you have a legal right to choose a medical provider that you trust. That being said, you should check to ensure that your selected physician is a member of the L&I’s official Provider Network.
4. You Can Appeal an Unfavorable Workers’ Comp Decision
Unfortunately, workers’ comp benefits are sometimes unfairly denied. If your workers’ comp claim was rejected in Spokane, you can bring an appeal. It is imperative that you do so as soon as possible after receiving a denial letter. Call an experienced Washington workers’ comp lawyer right away. A lawyer will review your case and help you take action.
5. You May Be Eligible to Bring a Third Party Liability Claim
In Washington, a workers’ comp claim is the sole legal remedy that you have against your employer. In other words, you generally cannot file a work injury lawsuit against your company. However, workers’ comp is not necessarily an injured worker’s only option for recovering financial compensation.
You have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit directly against any negligent defendant other than your employer that contributed to your accident. If your injury was caused by a property owner, business, contractor/subcontractor, manufacturer, or any negligent party other than your employer, you can hold them responsible through a third party liability claim.
Call Our Spokane, WA Workplace Injury Attorney Today
At Albrecht Law PLLC, our Washington work injury lawyers provide personalized, trustworthy representation to clients. If you were hurt on the job in Eastern Washington, we are ready to help. For a free review of your case, please contact our law firm today. With an office in Spokane, we serve communities throughout the region. Call (509) 495-1246.