Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Olathe, KS
Fighting for the rights of people injured at work in Kansas
Sometimes the unexpected happens and you are injured at work. You expect that your employer will do the right thing and cover your medical expenses so you can focus on healing. After all, the goal of workers' compensation is to provide financial stability while you heal. But things don’t always go the way we think they will.
When you are injured on the job, do not try to go at it alone. Instead, trust the Olathe workers' compensation attorneys at Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, who have been handling cases just like yours for decades. We’ve worked with clients in various industry sectors so you do not have to fret if you can be represented. If your claim has been delayed or denied, we can help with that, too.
What are common Olathe workplace accidents?
Any worker in any industry can be injured. The types of injuries may be more severe in some industries or jobs than others, and some people may face a greater risk of getting hurt, but anyone can be injured on the job. Some of the most common causes of workplace accidents include:
- Slip and falls: The most common workplace accident across all industries is a slip and fall accident. You can slip and fall in a number of ways. It may be a cord left on the floor or broken tiles. The reason that is most often attributed to slip and falls is a wet floor. If you work in construction, demolition, home renovation or painting, you have an increased risk of falling from a greater height, and that could mean the injuries are more severe.
- Struck by object: An object can fall and injure a worker, whether it is on a shelf or another floor, or being hoisted by a crane.
- Overexertion: This was the leading cause of workplace injury across the country in 2018, according to the Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index. This can happen when a worker is lifting, pulling, holding, lifting, or carrying on a constant basis.
Workplace accidents can also be caused by inadequate safety measures, lack of supervision or training, and negligent security.
What are common Olathe workplace injuries?
Just like there are common workplace accidents, there are also common workplace injuries – and some of them are incredibly serious. These include:
- Traumatic brain injuries: When there is blunt force to the head, this injury can occur. It can cause cognitive issues, as well as physical. Some victims may never recover.
- Spinal cord injuries: These are some of the most severe kinds of injuries as they cause damage to the nerves around the spinal canal. This often leads to extensive medical treatment including spinal injections, surgeries, and even permanent disability.
- Amputations: A worker can lose a limb or body part if they are stuck in between two objects or a machine malfunctions. Traumatic amputation can also be the result of a vehicle accident.
- Crush injuries: Crush injuries are catastrophic injuries. They happen when an object or a machine crushes a limb. These kinds of accidents are most common in construction, manufacturing, shipping, and warehousing industries.
- Burn injuries: If you work with electricity and/or power lines, with flammable materials or chemicals, or in food service, your risk of a burn injury increases.
- Chronic pain: When workers are constantly overworked and their bodies suffer from overexertion, chronic pain issues can arise. This is often a musculoskeletal or nerve injury.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome: One of the most common repetitive motion injuries is carpal tunnel syndrome. It is most often seen in offices and in positions that require a constant repetitive motion.
What benefits are available for injured Olathe workers?
Kansas’ workers' compensation program offers benefits to injured workers so they can focus on healing and return to work when they are ready to. There are two key elements of workers' compensation:
- Wage loss benefits: If you cannot immediately return to work, you can be eligible to receive two-thirds of your salary. This is typically for a temporary period and stops when you reach maximum medical improvement. In some cases, you may be entitled to obtain permanent wage loss benefits.
- Medical expenses: Similar to wage loss benefits, you will be entitled to have your medical expenses paid for until you reach MMI. Some of these expenses can include emergency room visits, medications, hospital visits, doctors’ appointments, physical therapy, and others. If you require further treatment to keep your condition stable, then this will also be accounted for.
There are many cases where additional benefits may be possible, such as when your injuries result in permanent scarring or disfigurement. Families whose loved ones died in the course of their job duties can also seek survivors’ benefits, which allow for $10,0000 for burial expenses, and up to $2,500 for a court-appointed conservator.
Why was my Olathe workers' compensation claim denied?
Even if you are eligible for workers’ compensation, your claim can still be denied for legitimate reasons, including:
- The injury was not reported in a timely manner: When an injury occurs on the job, it needs to be reported within the allotted time frame. A good rule is to notify your employer immediately. It will be best to notify them the moment it happens if possible.
- There are inconsistencies between medical records and the accident report: You will need to keep the details of how the accident happened in order. If the insurance company finds that you describe the accident one way to your physician and in a different way on the accident report, they can deny your claim altogether.
- The injury did not happen in the course of your job duties: To qualify for workers' compensation you must be injured in the scope of your duties. If the injury occurred while you were offsite at lunch, or outside of the course of your employment, your claim will be denied.
- The injury was part of a pre-existing condition: If you have a pre-existing condition, an employer may argue that there is no new injury.
- You didn’t seek medical attention for your injury: One last reason your claim can be denied is if you did not seek any sort of medical attention. Even if you feel the injury was “small,” it is essential to seek medical attention and have the injury documented.
- You are an out-of-state employee: In order to avoid paying workers' compensation coverage, some construction companies will hire out-of-state workers. Officials have noticed this trend and have begun to require coverage be offered to all workers' regardless of which state they reside in.
- You are not an employee: Workers' compensation is intended for employees only. This means that you are classified as an independent contractor, your claim will be denied.
It is important that you seek counsel quickly because there are many defenses to these denials. For example, if your employer purposely misclassified you as a contractor and not an employee, you could still seek benefits. If you are not on the job site when you are hurt but are still acting within the scope of your job duties, you can still collect benefits. If you sought a second opinion from your own doctor and their treatment plan differs from the one of the insurance-provided doctors, you can still seek benefits.
The workers’ compensation process should be a simple one, but it can often get complex. There are many times when a claim can be denied for even the simplest of reasons, and having an Olathe work injury lawyer on your side can help you claim the benefits you are entitled to receive. If you truly cannot collect workers’ compensation, you may have other legal options, such as filing a personal injury lawsuit, or seeking damages from a manufacturer if a defective product caused you harm.
Do I really need an Olathe workers’ compensation lawyer?
Legally, you’re never required to hire a lawyer. But having one on your side from the start of your claim can help. The best time to contact an Olathe workers' compensation attorney is right after you have been injured on the job, so we can assist you from the very beginning. There are also specific circumstances where you really should call a lawyer, such as:
- Your employer insinuates that the injury did not happen
- Your employer blames you for the injury
- The employer's insurance company has told you not to contact an attorney
- Your benefits have been delayed, denied, or altogether terminated
Kansas City Accident Injury attorneys can represent you in any hearing regarding your claims, to help you get the benefits you need.
Do you have a workers’ compensation lawyer near me?
Our Olathe office is located at 110 South Cherry Street, Suite 102. Call for an appointment. We also have other offices throughout Kansas and Missouri.
Contact an Olathe workers’ compensation attorney today
Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys has been fighting for injured workers for close to 40 years. Our workers’ compensation attorneys in Olathe are ready, able, and willing to help you, too. Call our office at 816-471-5111, or fill out our contact form to schedule a free consultation.
110 S Cherry St Suite 103,
Olathe, KS 66061