Do I need an attorney?
The Worker’s Compensation Insurance companies have experienced attorneys representing them. The adjusters handling the cases typically have years of experience in worker’s compensation. The insurance company, employer, and their attorneys are interested in saving money. The less benefits they pay you, the more money they save! You can not “avoid problems” by representing yourself. The attorneys for the insurance company will take advantage of your lack of knowledge of the law. For this reason, everyone should be competently represented in a Worker’s Comp claim.
Do I have to pay to speak with an attorney in your office?
No. Consultations are free and confidential. Nobody may know that you contacted us unless you give permission to share such information.
Do I have to pay attorneys fees if I get help from an attorney, but return to work without a settlement?
The Gallagher Law Group, P.A. handles Worker’s Compensation cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that we are only paid fees if a lump-sum cash settlement is obtained. If not, the Worker’s compensation insurance company may have to pay the injured worker’s attorney’s fees. Our clients are not responsible for paying any fees or costs if there is no settlement obtained.
If I am unhappy with my current medical treatment, can I see a different doctor?
Yes. There are several ways that you may see a different doctor under the law. In some instances, the insurance company may choose the doctor, and in others the injured worker may choose the doctor. It is very important that one knows all of the available doctors that handle Worker’s Compensation in one’s geographic area. It is also important to know the relationship between each doctor and the Worker’s comp insurance company. Please consult with The Gallagher Law Group, P.A. attorneys before attempting to get treatment with a different doctor in your Worker’s Compensation claim.
Do I have to return to work if the doctor released me before I am ready to return to work?
The insurance company is very interested in getting injured workers back to work as soon as possible. This saves the insurance company money. The insurance company may put pressure on the doctor to release an injured worker back to work before the doctor wants to release the injured worker. Remember – the insurance company PAYS the doctor. We have routinely succeeded in challenging and changing the work restrictions and “return to work” opinions of the authorized Worker’s compensation doctors.
Can my employer fire me or harass me because I had a work accident, filed a Worker’s Compensation claim or hired an attorney?
No. It is illegal for an employer to fire, threaten to fire, intimidate, or coerce any employee because of that employee’s claim for Worker’s compensation or attempt to claim Worker’s compensation. Many times, our clients will advise of other injured workers who have been “fired” after having work injuries. This is most often not the case. Many times an injured worker will choose to “resign” as part of a settlement agreement – which is completely voluntary. Other times, a doctor’s restrictions prevent the injured worker from returning to work with the employer.
Can I settle my case?
Yes. An insurance company is almost always interested in paying an injured worker a lump-sum amount of cash in exchange for an injured worker’s agreement to close the case. However, an injured worker can never be forced to settle a case. Furthermore, an injured worker should never attempt to settle a case on their own, as the injured worker will never be able to obtain the same negotiating power of an experienced attorney. The attorneys at The Gallagher Law Group, P.A. have built a reputation of obtaining among the highest settlements throughout the State of Florida as the result of superior knowledge, aggressive litigation, and tough negotiation.
Can I be denied jobs in the future because I filed a Worker’s Comp claim and/or hired an attorney?
Once you report a work accident to your employer, the accident is then reported to the Worker’s Comp insurance company. The Employer/Worker’s Compensation Carrier is required to report your injury to the State of Florida. Thereafter, limited information regarding your filed claim may be obtained by anyone from the Department of Financial Services, but only with your written permission.