Washington State Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Seasoned Washington State Workers Compensation Attorney Fights for Financial Benefits for Hard-Working Individuals Injured on the Job in King County, Lewis County, Pierce County, Thurston County, and Throughout WA
Have you suffered an injury on the job, or have you been diagnosed with an illness or medical condition that may have been caused by your work? If so, you may be entitled to file a workers’ compensation claim that can provide you with financial benefits, including medical treatment, partial replacement of lost wages, or financial or pension benefits if you have sustained permanent disability. To ensure you receive the full scope of benefits you deserve, turn to a Washington state workers compensation attorney from Smith Duran Law
For years, our firm has vigorously represented the rights of injured workers in Washington’s workers’ compensation system. We understand the difficulties that injured people can face in getting the insurance benefits and specialist care that they need for their condition. We strive to offer compassionate, effective legal representation aimed at obtaining justice for our clients. Our attorneys have extensive experience with Washington state’s workers’ compensation laws, with attorney Laurel Smith having served as chair of the Washington State Association of Justice’s workers’ compensation section and also having sat on the Department of Labor & Industries’ Independent Medical Exam Improvement Committee.
After you have been injured on the job, reach out to Smith Duran Law for a free initial case review to learn more about what a Washington state workers compensation attorney can do to help you secure the benefits you need to recover from a work injury or occupational illness.
Benefits Available Under Workers’ Compensation in Washington State
The workers’ compensation system in Washington state provides workers who have suffered a work-related injury or occupational illness with various financial benefits that are designed to help them make as full of a recovery as possible so that they can hopefully get back to work. Some of the benefits that are provided by workers’ comp include:
- Medical benefits, which pay all medical bills and prescription costs incurred to treat your work injury or occupational illness, until your treating provider certifies that your condition has stabilized and no further treatment is likely to improve your condition
- Reimbursement of certain travel expenses incurred in traveling to medical appointments and procedures
- Reimbursement for personal property of yours that was damaged or lost in a work-related accident
- Partial wages replacement if you miss a minimum amount of time from work due to your injury or illness
- Financial payments through permanent partial disability if you suffer a permanent loss of function in a body part but are still able to work
- Monthly pension benefits if you are permanently and totally disabled from doing any kind of gainful employment
- Vocational training can help teach you new job skills if you cannot return to your job due to your injury but can do other kinds of work
In Washington state, employers either obtain workers’ compensation coverage directly from the state Department of Labor & Industries or certain large or public employers can choose to self-insure for workers’ compensation and pay their employees’ claims.
What Is Involved in the Process of Claiming Workers’ Comp Benefits?
To recover benefits on a workers’ compensation claim, you will need to follow these steps:
- First, you should immediately seek treatment or medical attention if you were injured on the job or involved in an accident at work. If you go to the hospital or to your doctor, make sure to tell them that you were injured at work. After the first visit with a medical provider of your choice, you will need to see a provider authorized by the state Department of Labor & Industries (L&I)
- You should also inform your employer as soon as possible that you have been in an accident on the job and have suffered a workplace injury.
- Within one year of a work injury, you must file a formal workers’ compensation claim, either with your employer if they are self-insured, or with L&I if your employer is insured for workers’ compensation through L&I. Your doctor must also send their report on your injury to a self-insured employer or to L&I within five days.
- If your self-insured employer or L&I requires no additional information and determines that you are eligible for wage replacement benefits, you will begin receiving benefits within 14 days.
- If you wish to contest a denial of your claim, you must file a written protest with L&I within 60 days of receiving a decision on your claim. Alternatively, you may choose to appeal a decision directly to the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals.
- If you need to reopen your workers’ compensation claim after it has been closed by L&I, an application to do so can be made solely to seek medical benefits, or you can open a claim to recover both medical benefits and wage loss replacement.
Contact Us for a Free Case Evaluation with a Washington State Workers Compensation Attorney on Our Legal Team
Don’t put off starting the process of pursuing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. If you do, you may lose out on critical financial resources you might be entitled to for a work-related injury or illness. Contact Smith Duran Law today for a free, no-obligation consultation to go over your legal options with a Washington state workers compensation attorney from our firm.
Frequently Asked Questions about Workers’ Compensation
Under Washington state workers compensation law, any employee who works for an employer for compensation or other remuneration is entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits in the event they suffer an injury or illness that arises in the course and scope of employment. This includes part-time, seasonal, temporary, or teenaged employees, so long as their injury or illness is found to be work-related. However part-time domestic workers, children employed on a family farm, cosmetologists or barbers who rent their space, and certain musicians or entertainers are exempt from workers’ compensation.
Workers’ compensation is considered a “no-fault” system, which means that an employee does not need to prove that their work injury or occupational illness was caused by their employer’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional actions. Instead, employers are obligated for workers’ comp benefits whenever an employee suffers an injury or illness in the course and scope of their work.
A third-party injury claim refers to a lawsuit that a worker who suffers a work-related injury or occupational disease files against a person or company that is not associated with their employer. Third-party liability may arise out of common workplace accidents including those caused by manufacturing or design defects in products used on the job, drivers who cause motor vehicle accidents that injure a worker, and negligent property owners that fail to maintain the premises of a job site.
The Department of Labor and Industries manages claims for injuries at work. You are entitled to money for lost wages, medical treatment, vocational retraining, loss of body function, and in some cases a pensionLEARN MORE
If your injury was caused by someone other than a co‑worker, an auto accident, or defective equipment, you may be entitled to additional compensation. Our attorney will evaluate your case.LEARN MORE