There are some very rare circumstances under which you can pursue a claim against your employer for an injury on the job, however, 99% of the time you are not able to pursue a claim against your employer for your job related injury. Washington State has provided an alternative system for an employee to be compensated for an on the job injury and that is through the worker’s compensation program which is managed by Washington State Labor and Industries.
When should I hire a lawyer?
When to hire an attorney is a question only you can answer. Our advice would be to get an attorney involved early on in the process. Claim managers may be friendly and nice, but make no mistake, they are not on your side. Once decisions are made and orders are handed down, options become limited. Do not wait until it is too late, get an experience attorney on your side as soon as possible.
Does my employer have to give me my job back once I heal?
An employer cannot terminate you or take any adverse employment action against you for filing a worker’s compensation claim. However, an employer does need to be able to carry on with their business. If you are going to be out an extended period of time or require special accommodations, the employer may have to let you go or move you to another position.
Am I going to be paid for my time out of work?
If you are going to miss an extended period of time from work or can only perform light duty work that your employer cannot accommodate, you may be eligible for time loss compensation. Time loss compensation will begin within 14 days of receiving notice from your doctor that you are off work, however, you will not be compensated for the first three days that you miss as this is considered a waiting period. Although you may receive time loss income as part of your claim, you will not receive the full amount you made at your job. Instead, you will receive a portion of your wages which is generally between 60 – 75%.
Am I entitled to a settlement from L&I?
Settlements (in the terms most people think) do not really exist in worker’s compensation claims. If your injury is so severe that you are deemed permanently partially disabled (the part of your body injured will never fully get better) or it is determined that you will never be able to work again, you may be entitled to an award. This award may take form as a one time lump sum payment in the case of a permanent partial disability award, or a lifetime pension award in the case of someone who will never be able to return to work.