Most employees in Wisconsin are covered by workers’ compensation. If you have suffered a work-related illness or injury, our attorneys can help you claim the benefits that you deserve.
Attorneys for Workers’ Compensation Claims in North Central Wisconsin
If you have suffered a job-related injury, you may be entitled to medical and disability benefits through workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation provides an alternative to filing a personal injury claim against your employer (individuals generally cannot sue their employers for injuries suffered on the job), and is intended to make it easier to collect the money that you need to cover your expenses, while you recover. Unfortunately, filing a workers’ compensation claim is rarely as straight-forward as it should be.
Understanding your rights under Wisconsin’s workers’ compensation laws can be a challenge, and employers and their insurance companies often make it exceedingly difficult for employees to obtain the benefits to which they are legally entitled. From delayed responses to improper denials, companies use a number of tactics to protect their bottom lines. If you have suffered a workplace illness or injury – or if you have already had your workers’ compensation claim denied – it is best to have an experienced attorney on your side. At Crooks, Low & Connell, S.C., our attorneys can help you claim the benefits that you deserve.
Common Questions About Workers’ Compensation
1. Is my illness or injury covered by workers’ compensation?
In Wisconsin, almost all employees are eligible to file for workers’ compensation. In order for a specific illness or injury to be covered, it must arise out of your employment. However, this does not mean that it must be specifically related to your job duties. For example, if you fell down the stairs at work, you could be eligible for workers’ compensation. Occupational illnesses and repetitive-stress injuries (such as carpal tunnel syndrome) can qualify for workers’ compensation coverage as well.
2. What benefits are available through workers’ compensation in Wisconsin?
In Wisconsin, workers’ compensation benefits can cover your:
- Medical Expenses – You are entitled to have your employer cover the cost of necessary medical treatment related to your injury or illness.
- Lost Wages (Temporary Disability) – While you are recovering, you are entitled to temporary disability benefits to cover a portion of your lost wages. This is true both if you are unable to return to work and if you are able to work on a limited basis.
- Permanent Disability – For certain types of serious injuries, workers’ compensation will also pay continuing benefits, even if you are able to return to work full-time.
- Retraining Costs – If your injury prevents you from returning to your previous employment and you cannot earn at least 90 percent of your pre-injury wages in a different job, you may be entitled to retraining benefits.
In certain circumstances, injured employees can seek additional benefits as well (such as for a disfiguring injury). In addition, although workers’ compensation is generally a no-fault system, if you were injured as a result of a safety violation by your employer, this too may entitle you to additional benefits.
3. Can I see my own doctor?
Yes. Unlike some other states, in Wisconsin, injured employees are entitled to see their own doctors for treatment of their work-related injuries.
4. When can employers deny workers’ compensation claims?
There are very few circumstances under which employers can deny workers’ compensation claims filed by their employees. If your employer has denied your claim, you should speak with an attorney to understand your legal rights.
5. Can I receive my benefits in a lump-sum payment?
While workers’ compensation benefits are generally paid over time, it may be possible to receive your benefits in a lump-sum payment if you reach a compromise with your employer (or its insurance company). If a lump-sum payment makes sense for you, our attorneys can seek to negotiate a compromise on your behalf. However, it is important to note that, by compromising, you will generally be giving up your right to seek additional compensation, so this is not a decision to be taken lightly.
Third-Party Claims: Seeking Full Compensation for Your Work-Related Injury
While employees generally cannot sue their employers for work-related injuries, Wisconsin’s workers’ compensation law does not prevent employees from filing lawsuits against third parties. If you were injured in an accident (such as a vehicle collision) and someone else is to blame, our attorneys may be able to file a personal injury claim to seek full compensation for your losses.
Speak with a Wisconsin Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today
The attorneys at Crooks, Low & Connell, S.C. represent injured employees in workers’ compensation claims and appeals throughout North Central Wisconsin. For a confidential consultation, call our Wausau, WI law offices at (715) 842-2291 or request to speak with an attorney online today.