Memphis Workers Comp Lawyer

Don’t let an on-the-job injury hurt you more than it needs to. Get in touch with a qualified Memphis workers compensation lawyer who can help you obtain the funds you’ll need to support yourself while you recover.

Tennessee is one of many states that require employers with a certain number of employees (usually a minimum of five) to carry workers compensation coverage on their insurance policies. This is done to protect employees’ financial status if they are injured or fall ill due to the requirements of their position and need to take time off to heal.

The experienced attorneys at Gray Law Group understand that workers compensation laws can be extremely complex at a time when you just need to know the facts. A Memphis workers comp lawyer from our firm will make sure you understand what to expect throughout the process of filing for your benefits so you have little to worry about while recovering at home.

Memphis Work Comp Eligibility Requirements

From their first day of work, all Memphis employees are covered by their employers’ workers compensation insurance policy. For an employee’s injury or illness to qualify for workers comp benefits, he or she must be examined by a physician and given an impairment rating that will determine how long he or she is estimated to be out of work.

Your injury must also have occurred at work or through the requirements of your position. Pre-existing conditions that flare up without cause from your job will not qualify for benefits.

Disqualification

There are certain circumstances in which you will not be able to collect workers compensation in Memphis—even if you were injured at work. Some of these include if you were breaking the law or in violation of company policies (i.e., engaging in horseplay or working under the influence of drugs or alcohol) when you were injured.

You may also be disqualified from obtaining workers comp benefits if you decline to work a lesser position offered by your employer if you are cleared by your treating physician to do so.

All About Your Memphis Workman’s Comp Benefits

The question on most injured employees’ minds is how much they can expect to receive from their workers comp benefits. This amount will vary, with consideration for the impairment rating given by your treating physician, but typically, employees can expect to receive around two-thirds of their pre-injury income—with certain upper limits on total income.

There are two main classifications of benefits: temporary disability benefits and permanent disability benefits. Both categories can be classified as partial or total disability. To receive temporary benefits, you must be out of work for seven days before you will start to accrue benefits. Once you are out of work for fourteen days, you’ll be able to collect from the date of your injury.

Permanent disability benefits are awarded to those who aren’t expected to be able to return to their position and are unlikely to be able to continue working in the future. The amount varies considerably, depending on the severity of the injury, but it will be subject to certain upper limits.

Workers comp benefits are meant as a replacement of your income while you are unable to work. Your employer’s insurer will also be responsible for covering the costs of your medical care and treatment in full. Workers comp does not, however, cover non-economic damages like pain and suffering or the remaining third of your lost wages while you are out of work.

Fortunately, your workers comp lawyer in Memphis can help you maximize your benefits so you live as comfortably as possible.

Concerns About Retaliation

Even though they truly need time off to recover, many injured employees will decide not to proceed with a Memphis workers comp claim due to the fear of retaliation. But you should know it is illegal for your employer to terminate, harass, demote, or otherwise create a hostile work environment for you when you pursue work comp benefits.

Unfortunately, because Tennessee is an “at-will” state for employment, your employer is not required to retain your position for you while you are out of work and can terminate your position at any time for any reason. If we are able to establish that you were let go specifically because you sought workers comp coverage, we can proceed with a wrongful termination suit against your employer.

Returning to Work After a Memphis Work Injury

As a general rule, an employee will be able to collect workers compensation benefits until he or she is medically able to return to work. Employees who suffer a permanent injuries and will not be able to return to their position can expect to receive permanent disability benefits unless or until they are able to find employment in a new position of their ability.

If your employer is able to offer you a lesser-paying position with fewer responsibilities and you are medically able to work the job, you are required to accept the offer to continue receiving benefits. Your benefits amount will be based on the difference between your pre-injury wages and your new weekly income.

A Memphis workman’s comp lawyer can help you make the transition back to working as stress-free and financially comfortable as possible.

The Appeal

In some cases, your employer will fight your claim for benefits, or the insurance company will deny your claim even when you meet the criteria for eligibility. Generally, these claims are denied due to an error in paperwork or a failure to provide enough supporting documentation of your illness or injury.

When we answer any questions about your claim and are still dealing with a denial, your Memphis work comp attorney can begin the process of filing an appeal with Tennessee’s Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board, whose appointed judge will make a final determination on your claim.

Memphis Workers Comp FAQ

Because the majority of people do not have extensive knowledge of workers compensation laws in Tennessee, we have compiled a few of the most common questions our clients have had about their work injuries or illnesses and obtaining workers comp benefits.

Can I still collect workers comp if I was partially at fault?

Yes. Even if you are completely at fault for your work injury, you’ll be able to collect workers compensation benefits. These benefits aren’t dependent on establishing blame, and negligence is irrelevant unless you are interested in filing a personal injury claim against the liable party.

If I file a claim, am I suing my employer?

Workers compensation benefits are paid by your employer’s insurance company—not your employer. You are not suing your employer by seeking the benefits you’re entitled to when injured on the job. You’re simply securing the funds you need to support yourself while you are unable to work.

Can I receive workers compensation benefits as a lump sum?

You are legally allowed to request your workers comp benefits as a lump sum payment, rather than the typical payment schedule. However, if you choose to do so, you will waive your right to any future ongoing medical care coverage you may require.

Call a Memphis Workers Comp Attorney

If you have further questions about your work illness or injury and obtaining the workers compensation benefits you deserve, reach out to an experienced Memphis workers comp lawyer at Gray Law Group. We can schedule a free, no-obligation claim evaluation today via phone at 504-233-7000 or through the convenient contact form at the bottom of this page.