Workers’ Compensation Lawyers in Camden, SC

The workers’ compensation system in South Carolina is meant to protect injured employees by providing them with financial and medical benefits when they have suffered a work-related injury.

However, the workers’ comp claims process is not always easy. You could be dealing with an insurance company that denies your claim or needs to negotiate a settlement that fully pays you for your injuries. An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can protect your legal rights in the process. Contact Savage, Royall & Sheheen, LLP, where our attorneys can assist you with your workers’ compensation case in Camden, SC.

Injuries That Entitle You to Workers’ Compensation

The legal requirement for workers’ compensation in South Carolina is that you have (a) suffered an injury and (b) that is work-related. In many cases, the injury comes from an accident that happens at a moment in time. You could slip and fall, or you can be hurt when using sharp equipment.

Your body could also break down over time because of the physical stresses of your job. If you continuously lift heavy weights, you could suffer wear-and-tear or overuse injuries, such as:

  • Bursitis
  • Tendonitis
  • Disc and other back injuries

Further, the conditions of your job could expose you to other harms. You may have worked around chemicals that have now caused you an occupational illness, such as:

  • Respiratory illnesses
  • Musculoskeletal disorders
  • Skin disorders
  • Hearing loss
  • Extreme stress and mental health disorders

Occupational illnesses may be difficult to tie to a specific job, so you may need a lawyer to help with difficult cases. The insurance company may deny your claim, forcing you to provide more evidence or appeal your case.

How Workers’ Compensation Benefits Work in South Carolina

Once you can demonstrate you have suffered a work-related injury, you would then receive workers’ compensation benefits. The main components of your benefits are:

  • Two-thirds of your average weekly wages that you were earning before your injury, up to a statutory cap of $1,035.78 (which is adjusted each year based on a formula).
  • The cost of reasonable medical care to treat your injury, including doctor’s charges and the cost of rehabilitation.
  • Vocational training teaches you to perform a new job when you can no longer do your own.

You could qualify for a settlement for a permanent injury to a body part, based on a table that assigns weeks of benefits to certain injuries. Much depends on your disability rating, which is something that you could challenge. Your lawyer could help you negotiate the settlement.

You Usually Cannot Sue Your Employer for a Work-Related Injury

The workers’ compensation system features several trade-offs. Employers are required to spend money from their accounts to provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage for their employees. They have no choice about spending this money, and they can face serious consequences if they fail to provide workers’ compensation coverage. Employers could even be sent to jail for not having workers’ compensation insurance.

In exchange for this requirement, employers are largely immune from personal injury lawsuits filed by employees. Workers’ compensation becomes the exclusive remedy for injured employees, except in very limited circumstances.

You can only sue an employer for negligence if:

  • They failed to purchase workers’ compensation coverage
  • The employer acted intentionally to harm you — which only happens in certain extreme circumstances, like potentially sending you into a situation with certain harm.

Otherwise, the only way that you could file a lawsuit for a work-related injury is when a third party was to blame for what happened. If you can prove negligence of this party, you would likely get more compensation than you would have from a workers’ compensation claim. You would likely still be eligible for benefits, even if you did not win your lawsuit.

What to Do After a Workers’ Comp Denial in South Carolina

If the insurance company has denied your workers’ compensation claim, they do not get the final word. You have legal options of your own that you can pursue. In the end, it is a commissioner from the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission who will act as an administrative law judge in deciding your case.

Statistics show that roughly two-thirds of workers’ compensation claims are converted to benefits within one year. In many of these cases, you could get even more money. Your lawyer could either fight on your behalf during the legal process, or they may negotiate a settlement with the insurance company.

The first thing that you should do after your workers’ comp claim is denied is hire an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer if you do not already have one. Your attorney can represent you by helping you file and document your appeal. Your lawyer could also speak with the insurance company to clear up any misunderstandings that may have caused your claim to be denied.

The Commissioner would hold a hearing where your attorney could present evidence in your favor. You may be required to see a so-called independent doctor for further examination. Your doctor could testify about your condition. The Commissioner would weigh the evidence and issue their decision. If you did not win your appeal, you could request a hearing in front of the full panel of commissioners.

How Our Workers’ Comp Lawyer Can Help

Our team can do the following in your workers’ compensation case:

  • Help you fight a denial by filing an appeal
  • Negotiate a settlement of your claim
  • Fight for you to get the medical care you need covered
  • Stand up if you are being told you have to go back to work and are not able

Contact a Camden Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today

If you need legal help with your South Carolina workers’ compensation claim, contact a workers’ compensation attorney in Camden at Savage, Royall & Sheheen, LLP. Our team is standing by and ready to help you.

We would be happy to speak with you during an initial consultation, where we will explain the law and how it may apply to the facts of your case. To speak with an attorney, you can send us a message online or call us today at 803-432-4391.

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