Have you recently suffered an injury at work? Are you interested in collecting workers compensation benefits? Contact an experienced Iowa workers compensation attorney who can help you secure your compensation as quickly as possible.
When you’ve been injured or fallen ill due to a work incident, you shouldn’t have to worry about whether you’ll be able to continue to pay your mortgage and put food on the table. Workers compensation should give you the peace of mind that you and your family will be protected in case of such an emergency.
Unfortunately, workers comp cases are denied in Iowa every day. Whether you were denied because of a technical error or denied in bad faith, an Iowa workers compensation lawyer can help you gain access to the benefits that are rightfully yours.
To be eligible to collect workers compensation benefits in Iowa, you must meet certain criteria. Primarily, you have to have been injured while on the clock and performing your job responsibilities. If you were off the clock or not performing your job duties, your employer or the workers comp insurer may object to you collecting benefits.
Certain classifications of workers do not qualify for work comp benefits in Iowa. These include firefighters and police officers, who can collect work injury benefits under a pension fund, and exchange laborers in the agricultural industry.
Your Workers Comp Benefits
The amount of weekly compensation you will receive will depend on the type of disability you will be collecting on. For instance, an employee whose injury lasts more than three days can claim temporary total disability and will receive around 80 percent of his or her weekly income until he or she is medically able to work again.
On the other hand, an employee who is in recovery but able to perform other job duties—a status known as temporary partial disability—will usually collect 67 percent of the earnings difference between what he or she previously made each week and is able to make now until the worker is capable of returning to his or her pre-injury position.
In addition to the supplementation of your income while you are unable to work, your workman’s comp benefits should cover the total costs of your medical expenses associated with your injuries. This can include your hospital bills, prescription medications, and copays needed for doctor visits, among other healthcare expenses.
Appealing an Iowa Workers Comp Denial
If your initial claim has been denied, your denial letter should state the reason why. This is the moment when you may want to consult with an Iowa attorney who specializes in work comp claims. A qualified lawyer can make sure you have a full understanding of why you have been denied and what you will have to do to gain the insurer’s approval.
Simply providing additional documentation and supporting evidence from your physician may be enough to be approved in some cases, but if you were denied because the insurer claims your injury is excluded or that it was a pre-existing condition that was undisclosed and caused your injury or illness, we may need to file an appeal.
We may also begin the appeals processes if you were wrongfully denied benefits. A bad faith claim by an insurance adjuster could mean the insurer didn’t take the time to properly investigate your case, or it could mean the insurer is knowingly being deceitful in its denial in an effort to protect the company’s profit margins.
Whatever the case may be, the assistance of a lawyer who has the experience and knowledge necessary to win a Iowa workman’s compensation appeal can make a huge difference in the outcome of your claim and, ultimately, your life.
Concerns Regarding Retaliation
Iowa employers who retaliate against employees who have had to file for work comp benefits are breaking the law. Some work injury victims may be concerned that, because Iowa is an “at-will” state for employment, they can be fired for any reason at any time and are therefore subject to retaliation for filing a workers comp claim.
However, Iowa law also protects employees who have a right to collect workers comp benefits if they are injured at work. Therefore, firing or otherwise retaliating against you for filing a workers comp claim is illegal.
If you believe your employer has fired you or retaliated because of your claim, an Iowa workers comp lawyer can help. If we are able to prove in court that your workers compensation claim was the determining factor in your employer’s decision to terminate or punish you, we can not only recover the benefits you deserve, but potentially gain access to other damages that will increase your total award.
Iowa Workers Compensation FAQ
Workers comp law is not simple. The relevant statutes are often murky, and victims often struggle to identify a solid path forward. We’re here to help.
Below, we have listed some of the most common questions we receive from clients, along with the answers to those questions. For all the answers you’re looking for, get in touch with an Iowa workman’s comp attorney at our firm.
Can I work a second job while receiving workers comp?
Generally speaking, you will not be able to work a second job while receiving workers compensation benefits. Workers comp is designed to cover your loss of income and medical bills while you are unable to work, and your ability to work a second job would suggest that you have the ability to work and therefore do not require workers comp benefits.
Is work-related stress a covered condition in Iowa?
It can be. It will depend on the seriousness of your condition and our ability to prove that the stress has temporarily rendered you unable to work while you undergo treatment.
Can I receive my benefits in one lump sum?
You may be able to receive full commutation of your benefits if we are able to prove your need for a lump sum. However, by collecting your benefits as a lump sum, you will forfeit any rights to future benefits should your condition worsen.
Why was my work comp claim denied?
Your denial letter should state the reason your claim was denied. Most frequently, Iowa workplace injury victims will only be denied workers compensation benefits under a couple of conditions.
The following are some common reasons for work comp denials: You failed to provide appropriate documentation of your injury, your injury or illness was an undisclosed, pre-existing condition, you were injured while breaking the law or violating a company policy, or you failed to inform your employer of your injury within ninety days of the injury occurring.
Can I still collect workers comp if I was responsible for the accident?
Yes. Workers compensation is available to any eligible employee who has been injured while performing work duties on the clock. Fault in workers comp claims is largely irrelevant.
Speak with an Iowa Workers Comp Lawyer
If you’ve been injured at work and need help obtaining the workers comp benefits you’re entitled to, contact an Iowa workers compensation lawyer at Pothitakis Law Firm, PC who can secure the funds you need to recover without financial worry. To schedule your free, no-obligation claim evaluation, call 1-888-329-0243 or fill out the form below.