Rock Hill Workers’ Compensation Settlements
A settlement is when the workers’ compensation insurance company and the injured party come to an agreement on the amount of compensation. There are several ways to settle a case. If there is no permanency at all, they can settle it on a Form 17. This form reports to the Workers’ Compensation Commission what benefits were made such as if they are weekly or medical benefits. Form 16 leaves medical open for one year in case a worker’s condition changes for the worse.
Another way a case is settled is with a clincher agreement and final settlement. Clincher says the workers’ compensation understands there may some additional future benefits that they will be entitled to or there could be a change of condition for the worse. The case will be closed out and not responsible for any future medical expenses or weekly benefits, and it will pay a certain sum based on the person’s disability, and that would be a full and final release of all claims.
An employee should consider entering into a settlement when they have been released from all medical care and no longer need medical treatment for the injuries they suffered, or if the agreement is sufficient to cover any future medical expenses they will require. For help with Rock Hill workers’ compensation settlements, reach out to an experienced lawyer.
Who is Involved in the Settlement Process?
The insurance company and the injured worker or the worker’s attorney are involved in the settlement process. The treating doctor will be involved in providing a 14B that outlines for both sides what is the worker’s permanent impairment, their future medical needs, and what additional medical treatment would benefit them. Rock Hill workers’ compensation settlements are typically is made between the insurance company and the attorney, and then it has to be approved by the Workers’ Compensation Commission.
What to Ensure is Included in a Settlement
What a person should ensure is included in a settlement they want to make depends on their condition and what they are filing for. If it looks like their condition is serious enough that it would justify them filing for Social Security disability benefits, they need language in the settlement that would offset their Social Security over the remainder of their life. The clincher agreement would be not just for the number of weeks they are being paid.
Primarily, they need for the settlement to take into consideration not just the impairment rating, but their disability rating, and in doing that, will take into consideration the totality of the circumstances. A settlement must take into account the person’s age, occupation, education, job training, and medical treatment that may be needed in the future. All of that is considered in clinchering a case by letting the insurance company have a full and final release of all claims versus just relying solely on an impairment rating.
The difference between the impairment and disability rating is that the disability one takes into consideration all of those factors in the event the injury prevents them at some point from not being able to continue in that same line of work. But, that they would be able to find other work until they are eligible for retirement.
If they are 22 and a roofer with no advanced education, no other job training, and they have a serious back injury for which a doctor gives them a 10% impairment to their back, that is a substantial disability. If an accountant is lifting bags or boxes and hurts their back and ends up with a 10% impairment, and they have a college degree and a CPA, they can work from home in a chair at a desk. That 10% impairment probably does not have the same disabling effect that a 10% to the back of a roofer would have.
How a Rock Hill Lawyer Could Help With Workers’ Compensation Settlements
Having a local Rock Hill lawyer who knows who the medical providers are, which are being fair and which may be more inclined to favor an insurance company is a good reason for having the lawyer on their side in a settlement with an employer. The lawyer also will understand the economic situation in the community, what other jobs are available, and what educational requirements are needed for the jobs. They also will know what type of growth is going on in the community that would allow an injured worker to make a transition to a different type of job more suitable for their injury, and whether there are other jobs available to them.
An attorney will have an understanding of the terms of the opportunities to seek other medical treatment or get second opinions, and which doctors would be the best to recommend to the insurance company. Contact Schiller & Hamilton Law Firm today about Rock Hill workers’ compensation settlements.