If a worker gets injured or becomes ill due to their job-related responsibilities, they will generally be entitled to benefits under workers’ compensation. These benefits include compensation for medical bills, wage loss, and death benefits. In certain cases, especially those involving permanent disability, the employer’s insurance company might make an offer for a lump-sum settlement. Injured workers often find it hard to decide whether or not to accept this offer.
Employees should not jump on the first settlement offer made by the insurance company, but should instead evaluate all aspects pertaining to the settlement and figure out whether or not the settlement is fair. After evaluating all factors, if the injured worker feels that the settlement being offered is fair, they may choose to accept the offer or they may choose to seek more compensation. In either circumstance, it is best to speak with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. Insurance companies typically do what is best for them. A experienced attorney can help make sure you receive the compensation you deserve under Missouri law.
Before accepting a lump-sum settlement, injured employees should consider the following:
Does it make sense to accept settlement?
Understand that the insurer will often pay you less in a settlement compared to what they will have to pay you in the long term. So, consider questions such as: Do you think you are getting a fair compensation? Is your case in dispute? Is your medical condition going to improve soon? How soon will you get back to work?
What is the value of your claim?
Make a fair assessment of the value of your claim by multiplying the weekly benefit with the weeks left on your claim. Is the settlement amount somewhere close to this?
What is the extended value of your claim?
You may be entitled to further benefits after your current benefits run out. Take them in consideration.
How long do you think the benefits will continue?
Settlements make sense for workers who think that they will soon be in a position to get back to work, and they will stop receiving their benefits.
Is there a chance that your condition will deteriorate?
Settling a claim is a bad idea if there is a chance that your condition may deteriorate and you may become permanently disabled.
Do you know what it would mean to settle the case?
It is important that the injured workers understand that once they settle their workers’ compensation case, they will no longer be able to get any further compensation for medical treatment involving the injury even if it does not heal or becomes worse. All the benefits will stop once the lump-sum settlement is signed.
Missouri Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Having a knowledgeable Missouri workers’ compensation lawyer by your side will make this whole process a lot easier by allowing you to focus on physical recover. At the Law Office of James M. Hoffmann, we do all the calculations and negotiations and help our clients get the best possible compensation for their injuries. Call us today at (314) 361-4300 to schedule a free workers’ compensation consultation.
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