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Workers' Compensation

If you’re injured, contact us. We can help.

Missouri law firm evaluates workers' compensation case
Workers' Compensation

What is Workers’ Compensation?

Workers’ compensation, sometimes called “workers comp,” are laws that protect you if you get hurt, sick, or die on the job. Your employer will be responsible to pay for:

  • Medical Treatment
    You are entitled to the medical treatment needed to cure and relieve the effects of your injury. This includes surgery, physical therapy, prescriptions, and medical devices.
  • Lost Wages
    If you are temporarily unable to work because of your injury, you may be able to receive temporary disability (TTD) payments. The amounts vary by state and are a percentage of your average weekly income.
  • Permanent Disability
    If your injuries result in permanent partial disability and/ or permanent total disability, you’re entitled to compensation.
  • Survivor Benefits
    If you die on the job, or if the injuries you receive on the job result in your death, your employer may be responsible for paying your survivors (i.e., your spouse or surviving dependent children) financial compensation.
Workers' compensation

Types of Injuries

There are many different types of injuries a worker can suffer during the course of their job. Some of the most common include:


Repetitive Use Injuries

A repetitive strain injury (RSI), as the name suggests, is any injury caused by repetitive tasks. It is also caused by exertion or holding parts of your body in one position for extended periods. This is a common workplace injury that can cause strain, chronic pain, weakness, and tingling sensations in the hands or limbs.

Hazardous Materials

According to OSHA, a hazardous material is any substance or chemical that is a “health hazard” or “physical hazard.” These can be cancer causing chemicals, anything that affect your hematopoietic system (bone marrow, spleen, thymus and lymph nodes) or damages your lungs, skin, eyes, or mucous membranes. Chemicals that can catch fire, explode, count as hazardous for obvious reasons, as are those that can create harmful dust, gasses, fumes, vapors, mists, or smoke.

What do Workers’ Compensation Benefits Cover?

Every state has its own workers’ compensation laws, and the federal government has its own for federal employees. Regardless of whether you’re in Kansas or Missouri, workers’ compensation benefits should cover:

Payment for lost wages

Payment of authorized medical bills

Compensation for permanent injuries

Benefits to survivors of workers killed on the job

How to File for Workers’ Compensation

In the case of a medical emergency, always contact an ambulance or other emergency services first. Once the danger has passed, notify your employer and report what happened immediately. The incident should be reported on the day of the accident. Accidents that are not properly reported to the employer may be denied.

After your employer knows about your injury, the employer should provide immediate medical treatment. Then, you should consult legal counsel to ensure your workers’ compensation claim is properly filed with the Division of Workers’ Compensation. If your workplace does not have workers’ compensation insurance or says that you do not qualify, you will want to talk to a workers’ compensation lawyer about your case immediately.

Know that you can hire an attorney at any point in this process. Some people hire a lawyer before they tell their employer about their injury. Others wait until something goes wrong, such as not getting the proper medical care or being forced back to work before they have healed. It’s never too early or too late to seek help.

What to do if Your Claim is Denied

First of all, do not panic! If your claim is denied, we may be able to help you. Our attorneys can review your case and aggressively pursue it through each step of the judicial system. 

We understand the insurance company policies that are often used to deny claims. We also know the local court systems and workers’ compensation laws. We can tell when an employer and their insurance company are doing something improperly or are acting in bad faith. If that ends up being the case, we can and will pursue your matter on your behalf to obtain justice in court.

Workers comp attorney at a Pittsburg law firm

When to Contact a Lawyer

If you’re hurt on the job, don’t hesitate to contact us. Consultations are free, and we will always get back to you quickly to get your case started. We are with you every step of the way, ensuring you get the help you need and the benefits you deserve.

You should also contact an attorney if:

  • Your claim is denied.
  • The employer/insurance company is unwilling to send you to a doctor or pay for medical services.
  • Your employer says workers’ compensation does not cover you.
  • Your employer says they do not have workers’ compensation for their employees.
  • You are asked to return to work when you feel you need more treatment or have not fully recovered.
  • Your prescriptions or treatment have been denied.
  • You are not paid back for mileage to see authorized doctors.
  • You are not receiving your weekly checks on time.
  • You have received a settlement offer from the insurance company and aren’t sure whether it is a fair amount.
  • The doctor you are being sent to does not provide adequate medical care.

Going to court

The judicial process looks different depending on the state you were injured in.

In Missouri, you have
several options

File a Claim of Compensation. A Claim for Compensation must be filed with the Division of Workers’ Compensation within two years of the date of the accident.

Request Hardship Mediation. Then, after you’ve been evaluated by one of our physicians, a formal demand for medical benefits is made. If the insurance company does not comply with the request, your case is put before an Administrative Law Judge.

Hardship Hearing. If you or your employer are unable to reach an agreement, your case is taken before the administrative law judge, who will hold a formal hearing and consider testimony to reward medical benefits.

Final Hearing. After medical treatment is provided and you have reached maximum medical improvement (the point at which your injury is as healed as it can be, though you may still take medication or have pain evaluations), you will receive a disability rating and a request for a final hearing will be filed.

In Kansas, the judicial process is somewhat different:

Application for Hearing. First, a formal Application of Hearing must be filed with the Division of Workers’ Compensation within two years of the accident or three years of the last date the insurance company paid an authorized medical bill.

Preliminary Hearing. Then, after you’ve been evaluated by one of our physicians, a formal demand for medical benefits is made. If the insurance company does not comply with the request, your case is put before an Administrative Law Judge.

Regular Hearing. Once you’ve completed medical treatment, you will be evaluated by one of our physicians and obtain an impairment rating to determine your permanent disability and compensation amount.

Workers’ Compensation Board of Appeals. If you don’t agree with the Judge’s Order or Award and want to appeal the decision, you have 10 days to ask the Workers’ Compensation Board for review.

Court of Appeals. If you disagree with the Board’s decision, your case can then be sent to the Kansas Court of Appeals and the Kansas Supreme Court.

What to Look for in a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Workers’ compensation can be difficult to navigate on your own. You want to make sure whoever you hire is right for you and your case. Look for a lawyer who:

Has a local presence. With a local firm, you can visit their office in person or by calling their local number. This makes it easier to keep up on your case and have your questions answered. We have offices located in Pittsburg, KS, Coffeyville, KS, Kansas City, KS, and Joplin, MO.

Has experience. Look for an attorney who has decades of experience and has helped clients with similar cases. It’s also important for them to have trial and negotiation experience. This means they have experience in getting cases settled or won no matter how hard they may be.

Has a personal touch. You aren’t just a case number, you’re a person, and you should be treated like one. A good attorney will make you feel comfortable by listening to you, answering your questions, and treating you with respect.

Kansas law firm with practicing workers comp lawyer
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