Queensland law states that workplaces must be insured for workers’ compensation in the event when an employee sustains a work-related injury. As compensation claims operate on a no fault basis, the insurer (usually Work Cover Queensland) pays the medical expenses and wages of the injured employee regardless of what caused the injury.
This sounds like a simple and uncomplicated process. But it’s not all that. Injured individuals making themselves can experience difficulties like dealing with the insurers or wasting time on research due to lack of experience on making a claim.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
Insurance companies are mostly large businesses; thus they develop a procedure or a system similar to a company script for claims officers to follow when dealing with injured workers. Unfortunately, this system may not always get the injured person a fair compensation. Compared to experienced compensation lawyers, claims officers undergo limited training in terms of understanding the workers’ compensation scheme, which is quite complex.
It is vital to be knowledgeable about your workers’ compensation rights to avoid companies taking advantage of you and even offer you a settlement that may seem enticing at first, but may not be enough to cover your medical expenses for your work-related injury not only for the present time but also for the rest of your life. Meanwhile, they might leave out important information such as your entitlement to lump sum compensation or your right to make a common law .
Understanding the Value of a Claim
It’s not possible to know the value of a claim in the early stages of the claim process. Most injured workers may underestimate the value of their claim, while some have set higher expectations on their claim due to what they’ve read in newspapers or seen on television about massive compensation payouts.
Work Cover insurance companies have a reputation for being conservative when it comes to placing a value on claims. This is especially true for small (non-catastrophic) cases. Occasionally, the insurance company will give a low settlement offer but can be possibly still raised through negotiation.
Taking The Claim to Court
When injured workers are dissatisfied with the settlement offered by the insurance company, they have the right to take the case to court. However, court action will not guarantee success in raising the settlement offer.
Before taking the case to court, injured workers must take into consideration the legal costs, risks and problems with litigation. Most cases often have a lengthy time lapse before getting to trial.
Beware that the potential verdict you receive could be a fraction of the insurer’s final offer. Also, keep in mind that judges may be particularly reluctant to award significant verdicts in small cases such as soft tissue injuries.
The Importance of Quality Legal Advice
Pursuing through a workers’ compensation claim and/or common law claim without expert guidance can be overwhelming and stressful. Hiring an experienced compensation lawyer can easily mitigate the difficulties and issues you may encounter in the claim process.
Compensation lawyers negotiate on your behalf, provide expert advice, gather evidence to build a strong case, and ensure you receive an acceptable settlement offer.
Get in touch with the team at Brisbane Lawyers if you need assistance with your workers compensation’ Queensland. We offer a “No Win No Fee ” service so you can avoid stressing about legal costs while making your claim.
Call today on 1300 MY LAWYER (1300 69 529 937) or contact us online for a free assessment.