North Dakota Workers Compensation Lawyer

The state of North Dakota requires all employers to carry worker's compensation insurance to cover employees in the case of on-the-job injuries. If you are injured at work, you can file a claim for worker's compensation benefits to cover your lost wages, medical care and any permanent disability. Additional vocational rehabilitation will continue if you are unable to complete the tasks of your job. It is important that you follow your employer's instructions for filing a worker's compensation claim.

Workers' compensation is a type of insurance that accommodates employees who need compensation for medical care due to an injury during the course of work in exchange for the employee's right to sue their employer for negligence. Plans vary according to jurisdictions, though they can be made for weekly payments instead of wages as a type of disability insurance, compensation for past and future economic losses, the payment or reimbursement of the medical expenses as a type of health insurance, and benefits payable to the depends of workers who were killed as a type of life insurance. Not included in worker compensation plans are punitive damages for employer negligence and general damages for pain and suffering.

Employers are required to post instructions on how to file claims, for employees who are injured. They will generally require that you report the incident immediately or, in the case of an overuse injury, as soon as you are aware that the injury is work related. Once you have filed your claim, you will likely get a phone call from the insurance company's claims adjuster. They will want to tape a statement regarding the accident or injury. Before you make such a declaration, you will want to review your case with a worker's compensation attorney.

In North Dakota, Workers' Compensation is compulsory, and waivers are not permitted. There are no numerical exceptions. Every employer has to designated a medical provider, and the employee may opt out and choose a different provider in writing or prior to the injury. The waiting period for compensation benefits after the injury is 4 days, and compensation is retroactive if the disability continues for 5 days from the date of the injury. Attorney fees, such as hourly fees and maximum caps, depend on whether or not the injured worker prevails and what level the case was resolved at. The Administrative Hearing level cap is $4,620 and the Supreme Court level caps at $9,356, though there are different levels of resolution in between that have different maximum caps.

If your claim is small and not very complicated, the process will likely be smooth, and you will be able to get back to work relatively quickly. If it is a serious injury or an overuse injury, you will probably have your claim denied or questioned heavily. You need to review your case with a lawyer and allow them to handle all communications with the claims adjuster.

Workers' compensation attorneys will take your case on a contingency basis, meaning that they do not get paid unless and until you win your case and receive an award. North Dakota does cap attorneys' fees, depending on what level the case reaches. If it goes to an administrative level, the fees are capped at just less than $5,000, whereas Supreme Court level lifts the cap to double that. The most important thing to remember throughout your case is that you must attend every appointment scheduled for you. You will likely be sent to a doctor working for the insurance company. These visits are called independent medical exams. It is important that you tell the truth and do not exaggerate your injury. Let your doctor speak for your medical condition and your attorney can handle the legal aspects.


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