Kansas Workers Compensation Attorney

Being injured at work can leave you with high medical bills and being unable to work.
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Kansas Workers Compensation Attorney Near Your Location

The last thing you want or likely expect on the job is sustaining an illness or a personal injury that sidelines you from that job. Not only can that be physically and/or psychologically unpleasant, but it can also sideline you from earning the valuable income that you may be in desperate need of to make ends meet.

Even missing out on one full-time, minimum wage, 40-hour workweek would add up to missing out on hundreds of dollars of income. This could easily make or break you by making rent, taxes, car payments, or a number of different essential expenses.

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Kansas State Workers Compensation Program

In Kansas, laws are in place to make sure you are able to pay medical bills from injuries sustained at work, recover lost wages and obtain disability benefits. Workers’ compensation provides coverage for all these losses, which gives you time and resources to recover from your injuries.

However, many employers and insurance companies still fail to offer the necessary benefits.

Department of Labor, Kansas website

Kansas Department of Labor laws and requirements.

Although the Department of Labor created worker’s compensation programs to keep workers afloat while they’re incapable of earning an income, sometimes unfair roadblocks can arise that prevent workers from getting the benefits they need.

If you, or someone you know, are injured at work, knowing that your expenses and bills will be covered can bring peace of mind. Here at Pyle Law | Kansas Personal Injury & Workers Compensation Lawyer our Kansas workers’ compensation attorney near you has helped many injured workers claim the compensation and benefits they deserve.

Can I Sue My Employer for a Workers’ Comp Claim Denial?

In the State of Kansas, the right to no-fault workers’ compensation benefits comes in exchange for giving up the right to sue your employer for liability. However, can you take legal action if your workers’ comp claim is denied?

The short answer is yes. Nevertheless, there is a specific administrative process that you must follow to pursue a claim for benefits and appeal denials, and only the final stage of denial might even make it into a courtroom. If you receive a denial, immediately call a worker’s compensation attorney near your area.

Capital statehouse in Topeaka, Kansas

Capital statehouse in Topeaka, Kansas

Is It Worth Getting a Kansas Workers’ Compensation Attorney Near You?

Absolutely. Any dispute between one person and a large conglomerate is bound to be a long, drag-out, underdog, David & Goliath battle. When they’re going up against the big guys, the little guy is bound to be on his back foot. That’s why it helps to have ample help on your side.

The last thing you want is to wind up cast aside from receiving the help you need after getting sidelined from working. Understandably, most people don’t want to regularly think about the serious illnesses or injuries they have sustained at work, but that also means that they may not be so knowledgeable about the ins and outs of the workers’ compensation system.

Worker sidelined due to work illness

The last thing you want is to wind up cast aside.

That’s why it’s important to work with a lawyer around your location who will understand those ins and outs and will understand how to argue your case as effectively as possible.

What Does Kansas Workers Compensation Lawyer Look For?

A capable workers’ comp lawyer will look out for you, first and foremost, and will try to do everything in their power to build the best possible case for you. But beyond that, they’ll take into account and look for a whole other host of things, including:

  • Medical records
  • Medical experts or other relevant witnesses
  • Evidence of workplace misconduct
  • Timely settlement negotiations
  • Alternative legal actions

The first four bullet points will be essential in substantiating the case that you were unfairly denied worker’s compensation and will assist you in coming to a fair settlement agreement.

Medical records

Medical records are important to support your claim.

The last one will offer you essential contingency plans in the event that a worker’s comp suit wouldn’t award you the compensation you deserve. For instance, if you’re a commercial driver and faulty parts contributed to the accident that forced you out of work, you may be able to sue the manufacturer as a liable third party.

In any instance, an experienced worker’s compensation lawyer near your location will be able to help you better understand your options.

Workplace Injuries and Mcpherson KS Compensation Laws

In Kansas, workers’ compensation laws are in place to ensure that every employee who suffers an injury during the course of their work receives benefits to cover their bills and losses. In order to make a claim for compensation under these laws, the injuries sustained must have occurred in one of the following situations:

  1. Injured while on a job site; for example, a fall or an accident while using equipment
  2. Injured while off-site but while performing work-related duties; for example, a car accident while running errands for the company
  3. Incurring a repetitive strain injury or some form of stress injury as a result of work-related tasks or operations
  4. Illness such as cancer, mesothelioma, or lead poisoning, caused as a result of exposure to toxins or chemicals through the course of work
Welder working

Incurring a repetitive strain injury as a result of work-related tasks.

When considering an application for workers’ compensation in Kansas, negligence is not used as a determining factor. This means mistakes made by your employer or a failure to follow OSHA regulations will not be considered. Likewise, it doesn’t matter if you made a mistake and were injured as a result. You will still be able to apply for compensation. The law offers broad protection to those who have suffered workplace injuries and is designed to ensure no worker is left without compensation to pay their bills and expenses, or that they are left without the means to seek treatment.

Our Best Lawyer Can Help You with Your Workers Compensation Benefits

The compensation benefits for workers in Kansas provide coverage for everyday expenses and medical bills, however, these benefits are not as extensive as awards made under traditional personal injury claims. It is not possible for workers to sue their employers when they are injured, instead, they must file a claim under workers compensation law in order to recover their losses. These losses may include:

  1. Medical bills
  2. Lost wages
  3. Temporary payment of total disability benefits
  4. Temporary payment of partial disability benefits if you are able to work lighter duties and in a lower-paid job
  5. Permanent total or partial disability benefits
  6. Wrongful death benefits
Workers compensation illustration

Workers’ comp benefits.

Compensation for other losses including pain and suffering, which is usually available under personal injury compensation, may be included if you can prove negligence on the part of a third party who could be sued for your injuries. Consulting with an attorney near you will help determine if these losses can be considered as part of your claim.

What is Workers’ Compensation?

Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance coverage that is provided by your employer that will cover medical costs if you are injured in the course of your employment. Workers’ compensation pays benefits to employees who were injured or become disabled as a result of their job. The coverage begins on the first day of employment.

Workers’ compensation is “no-fault” insurance, meaning that the employee is not required to show that the employer was negligent to receive benefits.

Workers’ compensation does not cover employers who have gross payroll expenses of less than $20,000 per year or businesses that are in certain sectors of agriculture. If an employer fails to provide workers’ compensation to their employees, it is considered a class A misdemeanor, and they could face a fine of $25,000 or more.

 

Who Pays for Workers’ Compensation?

Employers must provide for the payment of workers’ compensation claims free of charge to employees. This law has been established by the Kansas Workers’ Compensation Act. Regardless of insurance coverage, employers are required to pay compensation benefits. 

An employer will pay your claim in one of three ways:

  • Workers’ compensation insurance: this insurance is managed by the Kansas Insurance Department; acquired through a licensed insurance carrier. The employer pays the premiums, and the insurance carrier should pay on claims received.
  • Self-insurance: this program is managed by the Division of Workers’ Compensation. An individual employer is required to show that they have the financial means to pay claims if needed.
  • Group-funded pool: this program is managed by the Kansas Insurance Department; employers must meet certain statutory requirements in order to form a self-insurance program to ensure their ability to pay claims.

How Does Workers’ Compensation Work?

Injured employees are not able to receive compensation for their first week of unemployment unless they are out of work for three weeks in a row. The first compensation payment is due when workers have reached the end of the 14th day out of work. Lost wage benefits are paid out in weekly installments.

In accordance with Kansas statutory law (K.S.A. 44-520), a workers’ compensation claim can be denied if an employee fails to notify their employer within the earliest of the following dates:

  • 20 calendar days from the date of the accident or the date of injury by repetitive trauma;
  • 20 calendar days from the date such medical treatment is sought for an accident-related injury or repetitive trauma; or
  • If the employee no longer works for the employer against whom benefits are being sought, 10 calendar days after the employee’s last day of actual work for the employer. 

What Does Workers’ Compensation Cover?

Workers’ compensation covers medical expenses, lost income, and rehabilitation services. If the injury results in the employee’s demise, then the benefits will be paid to the employee’s surviving spouse, dependents, or heirs.

An injured worker is entitled to all medical treatments that are deemed reasonable to treat the injury. However, the employer is allowed to select the medical provider that will be administering the treatment. An employee is able to be compensated for travel to a doctor when the trip is 5 miles or longer round-trip. 

It is of the utmost importance that an employee receives medical attention immediately. According to Kansas law, neither your employer nor insurance carrier is required to pay you for taking time off work for medical visits. 

If you are unhappy with your medical provider, you are allowed to seek treatment from an unauthorized provider without approval, with a $500 limit allowed by your insurer.  

Categories of Disability Benefits

The Kansas Legislature has determined that workers are eligible for 66 2/3 percent of their average weekly salary, but could be eligible to receive up to 75 percent of the state’s average weekly salary. Employees must receive at least $25 per week but are not allowed to exceed the statutory maximum set by the state. Wage benefits are paid until the worker can resume their employment, or the maximum benefit has been reached.

Listed below are all the categories of disability benefits and total compensation amounts allowed per injury:

Temporary Total Disability Due to the injury, an employee is unable to partake in their employment Total compensation may not exceed $130,000 per injury
Temporary Partial Disability Worker’s injury prevents them from making their full salary prior to injury The total compensation maximum is set by state statute
Permanent Partial Scheduled Disability Exists when the employee loses the use of a body part or partially loses a body part due to their injury Total compensation may not exceed the statutory maximum cap of $130,000
Permanent Partial General Disability Injury caused permanent impairment that affects the function of the entire upper or lower body; considered a “whole body disability” Compensation is based on the greater of: (1) the percentage of functional impairment; (2) the employee’s reduced ability to do their job, and the average weekly wage employee is capable of earning following the injury
Permanent Total Disability The employee is unable to partake in their employment due to their injury Total compensation may not exceed $155,000 per injury

 

How to File a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Once an injury occurs, an employee must notify their employer immediately. The notice may be provided orally or in writing. Whether written or oral notice is given, the employee must provide details of the injury, including the time, date, place, person injured, and the circumstances of the injury.

When notice has been provided orally, if the employer has designated an individual or department to report to, then the employee is required to provide notice to that department. If there is no designated department, then the employee must report the accident to a manager or supervisor. The employer is then required to report the injury to their insurance carrier or group-funded pool. 

The Employer Must Provide Information Regarding the Claims Process

Immediately following an employee’s injury, the employer must provide information regarding the claims process, the insurance company contact information for claims, and other matters as required by Kansas law. Such information must be given to the employee or the employee’s family (if the employee’s injury resulted in their death).

You are not responsible for filing the claim with your state. The insurance carrier will file with the state and pay your claim. 

The complexities of a workers’ compensation claim can cause turmoil in your work and personal life. Contact an aggressive workers’ compensation claim attorney to discuss your situation today. Let us do the heavy-hitting for you.

 

Hiring one of the Best Kansas Workers Compensation Attorneys to Handle Your Claim

If you are injured at work it should be a simple matter of reporting the accident to your employer and receiving the benefits you are entitled to. Unfortunately, some employers will deny claims for compensation, even if they are legitimate. Some workers are then pressurized into returning to work before they have fully recovered. In other instances, disputes arise over the payment of medical bills or the extent of the coverage of workers’ compensation and disability benefits.

If you are facing a dispute over your entitlement to compensation, then consulting with a qualified attorney around your location is your next step. For years, Our Worker’s compensation attorney in Kansas City, Tom Pyle has helped injured workers across Kansas get the benefits and compensation they are entitled to. Contact us today for a free consultation of your work injury case.

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E. THOMAS PYLE

Pyle Law was founded in 1999 with a commitment to fewer clients and better service. We believe that each and every client is important and everyone is entitled to justice and equal protection under our laws. We make every case a priority and are committed to keeping each client informed about the status of their case. We do not guarantee results, but we do guarantee effort.

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This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by attorney E. Thomas Pyle who has more than 20 years of legal experience as a practicing personal injury trial attorney.