Virginia Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

What’s the Difference Between Disability and Workers’ Comp?

by Staff Blogger | April 12th, 2021

When Virginia workers get hurt and can’t do their jobs, they have two options for replacing their income: filing for disability or filing for workers’ comp. Some people think these are the same thing, but they two separate income replacement methods for people who are too hurt or sick to work.

Disability insurance is:

  • Provided by private insurance—Many employers offer disability insurance as part of their benefits packages, but it’s typically optional. Employees who don’t purchase it don’t have access to it if they can’t work.
  • For all injuries—Injured or sick workers can apply for their disability insurance benefits regardless of where their injuries occurred. That means they can get benefits even if they were injured at home.
  • For short- and long-term injuries—Disability insurance is available as both short-term and long-term coverage, the latter of which can cover employees for many years or even decades after they get hurt or sick.

Workers’ compensation is:

  • Provided by state-mandated insurance—Virginia requires that almost all employers purchase workers’ compensation for their workers. Applications are reviewed and approved by a state board called the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission.
  • For work-related injuries only—Workers’ comp only kicks in for workers when they get hurt or sick at work or during work-related activities. If their disability occurs at home or while on vacation, they won’t be covered.
  • Typically for short-term injuries—Although workers’ compensation benefits can pay out for a maximum of 500 weeks, most people go back to work much sooner than this. Workers’ comp benefits end when a worker’s doctor says he or she is recovered enough to go back to work.

At Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, our Virginia workers’ compensation attorneys have helped many injured workers throughout the state get benefits. Contact us for a free consultation if you were hurt at work and have questions about or need assistance with your claim.

Workers’ Comp Claim? Here’s What’s Required.

by Staff Blogger | January 18th, 2021

Getting approved for workers’ compensation after an on-the-job injury can be a lifesaver for families who depended on the injured person’s income. But because workers’ compensation can be easily abused by people looking to make easy money, most states have strict requirements and processes for getting approved—and Virginia is no different.

The Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission (VWCC) doesn’t approve claims or applications willy-nilly. It carefully reviews all claims and heavily scrutinizes all aspects of them. Unfortunately, that intense level of gatekeeping means that some otherwise valid claims may get rejected, especially if applicants miss a single step at any point during the process.

The VWCC’s website includes a list of things that injured workers must do to have a chance of their claims being approved, and they include:

  • Report accurate home address—You must report your residential address to the VWCC and immediately update it if you move.
  • Report injury or illness to employer within 30 days—Ideally, you should report your injury as soon as it happens. But if you wait more than 30 days, you may be ineligible for benefits.
  • Ensure that your employer has reported your injury to the VWCC—Your employer has 10 days after you report your injury to report it to the VWCC. Be sure to follow up with them to verify that it has been reported.
  • File your claim directly with the VWCC—You (or your lawyer) are responsible for filing your claim with the VWCC. Don’t let your employer handle this for you—it’s up to you to start the process!

At Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, our Virginia workers’ compensation lawyers know that the workers’ comp benefits process can be complex and stressful. We want to make it easier on you and your loved ones. Contact us today for a free consultation.

What Are Your Options if Your Employer Disputes Your Workers’ Comp Claim?

by Staff Blogger | December 21st, 2020

Almost all employers in Virginia are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance helps workers cover their medical bills and lost wages if they get hurt on the job. But as with all types of insurance, the cost goes up when it’s used frequently. Because of that, many employers are reluctant to report injuries to the workers’ compensation board.

In some cases, they may even go as far as denying that their workers suffered injuries, or they may claim that their injuries happened elsewhere or were pre-existing. Unfortunately, many employers count on their injured workers simply giving up or being too afraid of retaliation or termination to pursue benefits. If this happens to you, here are your options:

  • Talk to your company’s HR department—If your employer has a human resources department, tell them what’s happening. If your injury was documented, the report can serve as valuable proof of what happened and can help your claim move forward.
  • File a claim on your own—Although your employer should provide you with the required forms to submit a workers’ compensation claim, you don’t have to rely on them for this. If they’re uncooperative, you can submit a claim on your own online or through the mail.
  • Get a lawyer—Pursuing compensation on your own can be difficult, especially when your employer is uncooperative or even denies your injury occurred. Our Virginia workers’ compensation lawyers can help you through the entire process.

Don’t risk losing out on the money you’re owed after your workplace injury. Contact us today for a free consultation.

You Can Get Workers’ Comp Even if You’re at Fault

by Staff Blogger | October 12th, 2020

When it comes to getting compensation after an accident or injury, most people are conditioned to believe that they can only do so when it wasn’t their fault. After all, that’s true for most types of personal injury cases. And in many people’s minds, victims who cause their own injuries shouldn’t be eligible for compensation anyway!

However, workers’ compensation is different. It’s a no-fault form of compensation that’s paid to workers even if they are at fault for their own accidents and injuries. Employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance to protect themselves and their employees in the event of on-the-job injuries, but many injured workers believe they’re ineligible if they were fully or partially responsible for their own accidents.

At Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, our Virginia workers’ compensation attorneys have helped many injured employees get full benefits for a variety of injuries. Don’t write off your opportunity for getting money to pay for your living expenses and medical bills after a workplace injury, even if you believe you contributed to it.

And remember—your employer has little say in the matter. Ultimately, it’s up to the workers’ compensation commission, and that’s where we come in. We know what they look for when reviewing and approving claims, and we know how to improve our clients’ odds of success and how to get them their money faster.

Contact us today for a free consultation. Regardless of how you were hurt, you aren’t getting the paychecks you need, and you need a legal advocate on your side to make things better. Let us help you get your life back on track.

How We Can Help You After an On-the-Job Injury

by Staff Blogger | July 20th, 2020

While some occupations put workers at greater risk of on-the-job injuries than others, all workers can be hurt while performing their job duties. From construction workers falling off scaffolding to office workers developing repetitive stress injuries, many types of jobs can cause painful, debilitating, and even disabling injuries. When that happens, they should be free to pursue workers’ compensation benefits—but getting approved for them isn’t easy.

When you file a workers’ compensation claim, you need two things to go your way. First, you need your employer to cooperate. Some workplaces try to hide or downplay injuries, and that can make difficult to move forward with a claim. Second, you need the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission (VWCC) to take your claim seriously. This governmental body acts as the gatekeeper for compensation claims, but its strict criteria means many valid claims fall through the cracks.

When you get the Virginia workers’ compensation attorneys at Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers on your side, you get a legal team that knows how to deal with both potential roadblocks. We’ll collect evidence that leaves no doubt about what caused your injury, and we’ll build your application or appeal in a manner that leaves little uncertainty or wiggle room for the VWCC.

Best of all, we know how to expedite the process, so that you’ll spend less time waiting for your checks to arrive and more time focusing on getting better and spending time with your loved ones. Contact us today for a free consultation. We have more than three decades of experience that you can use to your advantage.

3 Steps to Take if You Get Hurt on the Job

by Staff Blogger | April 27th, 2020

Getting hurt on the job isn’t just painful—it can also be devastating for your family’s finances. On-the-job injuries can require expensive medical treatments and ongoing rehabilitation, the costs of which may be too much for you to afford. In addition, your injuries can make it impossible for you to go back to work. That means no paychecks and even no health insurance if you get laid off.

Because of the potential negative consequences of workplace injuries on employees, almost all employers in Virginia are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance is designed to pay injured workers a percentage of their wages while they recover from their injuries. However, getting approved for benefits isn’t a guarantee, and the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission is notoriously strict when approving or denying applications.

You can improve your odds by taking the following steps:

  1. Tell your manager or supervisor about your injury right away—Report your injury to a supervising employee as soon as possible. The less time that passes between your injury occurring and you reporting it, the less chance the review board will believe your injury was caused by something else.
  2. Get medical treatment—After alerting your workplace of your injury, get medical treatment for it. Getting medical treatment not only helps kickstart the healing process, but it also creates an official record of your workplace injury.
  3. Tell the truth about your injury—Never lie, downplay, or exaggerate the severity of your injury. Always be fully upfront and honest about it, whether you’re talking to your employer, your doctor, or even your lawyer.

After taking these steps, it’s important to contact an experienced Virginia workers’ compensation attorney. At Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, we know what it takes to help injured workers like you win their claims. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Determining Who Qualifies for Virginia Workers’ Compensation Benefits

by | September 15th, 2014

When an employee is injured while working in our state, they’re often entitled to Virginia workers’ compensation benefits to cover expenses related to the accident—such as medical bills and lost wages. In order for a claim to be approved though, the accident must have been directly related to the employee’s duties.

Take the Norfolk workers’ compensation benefits claim that was filed on behalf of a police department trainee who was killed during training on December 9, 2010. According to Courthouse News Service, the widow of the victim contends repeat traumatic blows to the head were what caused her husband’s bilateral subdural hematomas.

Documents show that, while in training, the victim was involved in a head-to-head collision with another trainee and suffered repeated blows to the face from another officer’s fists prior to collapsing into a coma.

A court found the victims injuries occurred in the proximity of his job duties and were therefore covered under the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act.

The case highlights the intricacies that can come into play when determining if a worker is eligible for workers’ compensation benefits after an accident and leaves many citizens wondering what they can do to protect their rights to benefits in the event of an accident.

According to the Norfolk personal injury attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, hiring a lawyer can significantly benefit an injured worker. Doing so can help answer any questions that may arise, as well as determine what documentation will be necessary for your claim.

Changes Coming to Virginia’s Workers’ Compensation Laws

by | May 19th, 2014

In Virginia, most employers are required by law to carry a workers’ compensation insurance policy that will cover the expenses related to an employee’s injury or death stemming from an on-the-job accident. Unfortunately though, many employers choose not to abide by these rules, leaving many workers struggling for compensation in the event of an accident.

To address this problem, the state has stiffened the penalties against companies that fail to comply with Virginia workers’ compensation laws. The new, stricter standards are set to go into effect later this summer.

According to an article from Tire Business, employers who fail to supply workers and subcontractors with workers’ compensation insurance will now face a fine of $250 per day they are not in compliance beginning July 1. The fines will continue to grow until they accumulate up to $50,000. Under the current laws, employers who do not carry the required insurance policy are only subject to a fine of up to $5,000.

The new laws also clearly define the roles that are classified as employees to prevent companies from using a title to exempt a worker from benefit coverage.

Norfolk personal injury lawyer Lowell “The Hammer” Stanley understands how confusing the state’s workers’ compensation laws and processes can be and encourages anyone with questions about filing such a claim to speak with a qualified attorney immediately.

3 Steps to a Virginia Workers’ Compensation Benefits Claim

by | April 21st, 2014

Employers in the state of Virginia have a responsibility to protect the health and well-being of their employees; however, accidents can still sometimes occur that can leave workers seriously injured. The medical bills associated with such incidents can grow out of control, especially if the injury leaves an individual unable to work. The stresses that can accompany life after an accident can be immense, but there is help available to these individuals through Virginia workers’ compensation benefits.

Most businesses and employers in the state are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance that covers the expenses associated with on-the-job injuries. But the process for filing a workers’ compensation claim can be confusing. Norfolk injury attorney Lowell “The Hammer” Stanley explains the steps for getting workers’ compensation in Virginia include:

  • Filing a Claim- The injured worker or their legal representative must notify their employer of their injury within 30 days, and must file a claim with the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission within two years of the accident occurring.
  • Processing- The employer’s insurance company will examine the claim, then either offer a settlement or deny the claim based on their findings.
  • Appeal- If the settlement is not sufficient or the claim is denied, the individual has a right to seek to have the decision overturned through the court system.

Lowell “The Hammer” Stanley and his team of attorneys recognize how complex and confusing these processes can be, which is why they suggest speaking with a reputable lawyer if you have been hurt on the job.

Newport News Business Owner Seriously Burned In Accident

by Addison Durham | November 5th, 2012

November 5, 2012

The 49-year-old owner of a Newport News, Virginia, auto repair shop was seriously injured following an accident at the business several weeks ago. The Hampton Roads Daily Press reports the incident occurred on October 15 just after 1:30 p.m. at T&B Auto Repair Center, located at 4015 Jefferson Avenue.

Acting chief for the Newport News Fire Department, Scott Liebold, stated the victim was replacing a broken fuel pump in a vehicle when a small amount of fuel was spilled and the fumes ignited, causing a flash fire to break out. The victim’s clothes caught the flame and began to burn, leaving the man with serious fire and burn injuries over a majority of his body.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that every 31 minutes, someone suffers a serious injury as the result of a fire. These accidents resulted in roughly $2.6 billion in lost productivity in 200 alone. To help prevent accidents like this from occurring at the workplace, employers are encouraged to educate employees on the dangers of fire hazards.

The Norfolk Personal Injury Lawyers with Lowell “The Hammer” Stanley would also remind employers to supply workers with adequate protective gear when working under hazardous conditions. If you or someone you know was injured on the job and needs to talk to a law firm about workers’ compensation benefits, we may be able to help you.