Causes of On-the-Job Shoulder Injuries

For many Iowa workers, your job might require a lot of motion, exertion, and energy. Unfortunately, in doing your job, that could mean suffering a serious injury in the process. Now, you’re suffering from serious shoulder pain and you’re not sure where to start.

Fortunately, the right workers comp lawyer can help you understand what caused your injury and where to go from there. Depending on your situation, the cause will help your lawyer know what types of evidence to collect, which can put to rest any doubt the insurance provider might have.

When you need workers comp benefits for your pain, don’t hesitate to act. We’ll help you get the full benefits you need for your suffering.

Overexertion

In jobs that require moving heavy objects, overexerting yourself is a serious concern. It’s easy to underestimate the weight of a large box or trying to stop a stack of boxes from falling.  For example, you might have been stacking things, and they began to fall. To prevent injuries or damage, you tried to catch them, straining your shoulder in the process.

This can be a painful injury, and it can make it tough to work. Your shoulder may need rest to repair the damage to your muscles and surrounding tendons. Because of this, you might need work comp benefits to recover over time.

A Hard Fall

When we think of a fall, we often don’t think about the damage it can do. Many of us have slipped and fallen and earned little more than a bruised ego. Unfortunately, falling the wrong way can leave you seriously injured.

If you landed wrong on your shoulder, for example, the damage can be serious. The trauma of hitting the floor or ground can damage your shoulder, even breaking the bones. That can require physical therapy, setting the bone, and even surgery in severe cases.

Your Machinery

A repetitive motion injury can come by making the same motion over and over, and that’s what we usually think about when talking about these injuries. However, working with heavy machinery can also damage your shoulder.

Some heavy machinery might cause steady, constant vibrations, which can damage the shoulder over time. With these injuries, you might have noticed, after a few years on the job, that your shoulder aches after using these machines. Unfortunately, some Iowa workers may not realize that these machines are damaging their shoulders over time. By then, the damage has already been done.

Contact an Attorney About Your Shoulder Injury

If you’ve suffered a shoulder injury, going back to work for weeks or even months might be impossible. You’ll need to contact your employer about your benefits, but you might be concerned about how to get them. First, you’ll need to determine what caused the shoulder injury in order to file your claim.

Although there are several common causes of on-the-job shoulder injuries, your lawyer can help. At Pothitakis Law Firm, PC, we can help you gather evidence about what caused your injury. From there, we’ll help you report your injury, negotiate your benefits, and appeal a denial, if necessary.

Get help for your shoulder injury by starting with a free claim consult before you agree to or sign anything. To get started, reach out by calling 319-754-6400 or by completing the online form below.

How Long do Permanent Partial Disability Benefits Last in Iowa?

How Long do Permanent Partial Disability Benefits Last in Iowa?

Although you might have been injured in a work accident, your injuries might not be severe enough to leave you completely unable to work. The damage is permanent, but it doesn’t stop you from working. You should still receive workers comp benefits, but how long do permanent partial disability benefits last in Iowa?

You should have coverage that meets your unique needs. If you’re concerned about the amount of disability benefits you’ll receive, you’ll need to calculate the total value of your benefits. If you believe you’re receiving less from your work comp than you should, reach out for help from an experienced attorney.

Maximum Benefits in Iowa

When you’re injured, you might be able to receive certain workers comp benefits to cover partial disability. Partial disability means you’re returning in a diminished capacity, and these benefits should continue until you’ve reached maximum medical improvement. When an injury occurs to a specific location, these benefits have a predetermined schedule, or time limit, to how long you’ll be covered.

For those suffering a permanent partial disability, you’ll receive up to 500 weeks of benefits for your suffering. However, each injury type will have a different worth, which your employer’s insurance company will calculate.

This partial disability benefit should cover the time you’re healing and on light duty. If you’re transitioning into a less strenuous position, you may receive your compensation while you’re unable to return to work. If you’re not sure what your maximum benefits are for your injury, you’ll need to speak to a lawyer about your work comp benefits and their total value.

Getting Benefits for Your Needs

In some cases, you might feel as if you’re not getting the benefits you need for your job injuries. You likely won’t receive maximum benefits if you didn’t experience a full loss of use, so the insurance provider might only give you a certain percentage of what your claim is worth.

For example, let’s say you lost some use of your thumb. For a full loss of use of your thumb, you could receive sixty weeks of permanent partial disability benefits. However, any loss of use doesn’t mean you’re automatically entitled to sixty weeks.

For example, the insurer might determine that you only lost half the use of your thumb, which means you’ll receive thirty weeks of benefits for your loss. This can mean a huge difference in the funds you need to continue supporting yourself and your family. If you believe your partial disability benefits were improperly calculated, enlist the help of a work comp lawyer.

A Lawyer Can Help You Maximize Your Benefits

When you’re having difficulties securing partial disability benefits, you might need a lawyer from Pothitakis Law Firm, PC for your claim. We understand how difficult even a partial disability can be to recover from, and we know that it can often be overwhelming to secure the full benefits you deserve.

That’s where our attorneys can step in. Starting with a free consultation, we’ll work to understand your unique situation and explain how we can help you overcome any disputes. When you’re ready to get started, give us a call at 319-754-6400 or fill out the online form below.

Iowa Work Comp Denial: Are You Entitled to an Explanation?

Iowa Work Comp Denial: Are You Entitled to an Explanation?

When you’re injured at work, you expect that your medical bills should be covered, as well as any lost wages while you’re unable to work. If your employer offers work comp insurance, they should be responsible for the expenses you’ve incurred. Unfortunately, you might have already applied and received a denial.

If you’ve been denied work comp benefits, you might be understandably confused and frustrated. Your family is already feeling the strain, so it’s important to appeal your claim quickly. For that, you need to know why you were denied. When it comes to an Iowa work comp denial, are you entitled to an explanation?

An experienced and highly qualified lawyer can review your injury, claim, and denial letter. Then, they can represent you throughout the appeals process, so you can focus on your recovery.

Your Reason for Denial

First, make sure that the reason for your denial is listed on your denial letter. Insurance companies are required to list this, and it should be your first step to appealing your claim and getting the workers comp benefits you deserve.

Insurers are required to include your denial reason, and that information is critical to your appeal. For example, if your benefits were denied because you didn’t provide enough documentation regarding your work injury, then your appeal can include that necessary information.

If you don’t see a reason for your denial listed on your denial letter, speak to an attorney. They can ensure your rights are protected.

Fighting Back after a Denial

When you’ve been denied and were given an explanation, your next step is to appeal. Depending on the type of denial you’ve received, your workers comp denial attorney will address the individual reasons for your denial.

The first step of an appeal is to speak with your employer and insurer in an informal meeting to discuss your injury. This meeting will be your first chance to show that you were seriously injured and should have been compensated properly.

If they continue to refuse a settlement with you, your attorney can then schedule a hearing with the workers compensation commission. The commission will hear out your appeal, and then decide whether your case is eligible for workers comp benefits. If you don’t receive your benefits at this point, your lawyer can help you schedule a second hearing, giving you a chance to fight back and get the appeal you need.

A Lawyer Will Protect Your Rights

A work accident can leave you in a difficult, confusing place. You’re not sure who to turn, and now that you’ve received an Iowa work comp denial, are you entitled to an explanation? Fortunately, the answer is yes, and a lawyer can help you detangle the work comp appeals process.

At Pothitakis Law Firm, PC, we know that it can be difficult and frustrating to receive a denial letter for a reasonable benefits request. You were injured while on the job, and you deserve benefits to aid you through recovery. We can help, starting with a free consultation.

Ready to speak to a lawyer about your claim? Call 319-754-6400 or complete the online form below.

How to Handle an Iowa Workers Comp Dispute

How to Handle an Iowa Workers Comp Dispute

After an on-the-job injury, you could be looking at months or even years of recovery. These injuries might keep you away from work, leaving you without the compensation you need. Fortunately, your workers compensation should cover your losses and help you recover.

Sadly, not every injured worker gets the compensation they need right away. Your employer or insurance provider might dispute information regarding your injury. You’ll need to know how to handle an Iowa workers comp dispute to obtain your benefits soon. There are a few steps you can take to appeal your claim.

Informal Meetings

Once you’ve filed your claim, you should receive a letter approving or denying your claim. A denial is unfortunate, but it’s not the end of your chances for work comp benefits. Hang onto your denial letter, as it will provide the reason for denying your benefits, and this can help you during the appeals process.

First, discuss your work comp situation with your employer and the insurance provider. In some cases, you might be able to negotiate a settlement with them before taking your case further.

Be sure to review your denial reason before scheduling a meeting with your employer. You’ll need to know what factors led to your denial, which can range from a missed deadline to a lack of medical evidence. This gives you a chance to review your claim and gather additional evidence.

Unfortunately, your employer and the insurance provider might not budge on their decision. In this case, you’ll need to appeal your claim to the Iowa Workers Compensation Commission.

Your Workers Comp Hearing

When your employer or insurance provider continues to deny you the compensation you deserve, you and your attorney will need to schedule a hearing with the Iowa Workers Compensation Commissioner, which will oversee your appeal.

Here, you’ll need to bring all of the evidence needed for your appeal. For example, you might bring eyewitness reports that your accident happened while working; or you might need further medical exam results to show the severity of your injuries and the impact they have had on your life.

You and your lawyer will appeal the denial at the hearing. Your lawyer will present the evidence before the commissioner and your employer. Once this is completed, the commissioner will either approve the appeal or deny your workers comp benefits for a second time.

Get Legal Help with an Appeal

When you’re injured, your workers comp benefits should help you recover as soon as possible. Unfortunately, the insurance company might not be so willing to approve your claim, leaving you stuck with mounting bills and lost wages.

When this happens, you’ll need to know how to handle an Iowa workers comp dispute to get your claim appealed. The lawyers at Pothitakis Law Firm, PC can help. They’ll review your claim, prepare your appeal, and represent you before the Iowa Workers Compensation Commission.

Struggling with a denial that left you without compensation? Get on track with one of our free consultations. Claim yours by calling 319-754-6400 or by filling out the online form below.

Essential Elements of Successful Workers Comp Claims

Essential Elements of Successful Workers Comp Claims

When you’re preparing to file a workers comp claim, the ultimate goal is to get your claim approved. There are certain Iowa workers compensation laws that you’ll need to be aware of before you file.

Knowing these laws can help you ensure that your claim is completed fully, accurately, within all legal time limits, and without error so that the likelihood of your claim being approved is exponentially increased.

File Before the Statute of Limitations Runs Out

It is of utmost importance that your claim be filed within the statute of limitations. There are a couple of time limits you’ll need to be aware of in regards to your claim. First, you need to notify your employer within ninety days of being diagnosed with a work-related injury or illness, or within ninety days of the work accident you were involved in.

If your claim has been denied immediately after filing, you’ll have have to file your application for arbitration within two years from the date of your diagnosis or incident. Additionally, if you’ve already been receiving workers comp benefits and your benefits were suddenly stopped or reduced, you’ll have three years from the last day you received benefits to file an appeal.

If you fail to meet these statute of limitations requirements, unfortunately, you will be barred from pursuing further action, whether that be an appeal, arbitration, or additional benefits.

Qualifications for Workers Comp Approval

Knowing whether or not you actually qualify for workers compensation benefits can save you a lot of time if you know your claim won’t be approved. Generally speaking, to be eligible for workers comp benefits, you’ll need to establish that your injuries or illness were directly caused by the conditions of your work environment.

While almost every employer in Iowa is required to provide their employees with workers comp coverage on their insurance policies, there are a few exceptions to the rule. Exchange laborers who work in agriculture, police officers, and firefighters are not eligible for workers comp benefits, as they’re able to obtain work injury benefits from other sources, such as a pension fund.

Even if your injuries occurred at work, you should expect your claim to be denied if you were committing a crime, working off the clock, or in violation of your employer’s code of conduct at the time of your injuries.

Proving Your Condition Is Work-Related

The most important element to your workers comp claim is proving that your condition arose from your obligations at work. You will work closely with your Iowa workers comp attorney to gather evidence that can support your case, including medical documentation, witness testimony, photographic evidence, and/or video footage, where applicable.

Anything that can help the insurance company ascertain that your injuries or illness were work-related can help your claim be approved as soon as possible.

Consult with an Experienced Iowa Workers Comp Lawyer

If you need help preparing your workers comp claim, or if you have questions regarding workers compensation laws in Iowa, consult with a qualified workers comp lawyer at Pothitakis Law Firm, PC. You can schedule your free case review today by filling out the quick contact form below or by giving our office a call at 1-866-PLF-IOWA (753-4692).