Experienced Attorneys Help You Correctly File a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Oklahoma
Professional advocacy for injured employees throughout the state
Workers’ compensation is a program that compensates employees who suffer injuries in a workplace accident or are coping with an occupational illness. Workers who file on-time and correctly are entitled to wage-loss and medical benefits for the time they are unable to work. Employees need to comply with the Oklahoma laws in order to get their benefits and are eligible for benefits as soon as they start working, provided their injuries or illness is work-related.
At Stipe Law Firm, our Oklahoma workers’ compensation claim attorneys understand the legal process. We answer all of your questions and help you file claim forms correctly, which means filing the right paperwork at the right time in the right court. The filing of the claims starts the legal process. Our legal team then works to get you compensation for hospital and doctor bills, as well as the costs of medications and medical equipment, such as prosthetic devices. We also work to get our clients the allowable lost wages benefits so they can begin to pay their bills on time. With more than 60 years of experience, you can trust our team to help you.
How we guide clients through the claims process
Our Oklahoma work injury claims lawyers advise clients on their core responsibilities. We obtain the necessary records from employers about wages and work with the doctors so that you get the treatment the law allows, that reports are properly prepared, and that all medical issues are addressed. Medical issues include properly categorizing your disability as temporary, partially permanent, or totally permanent. We review when you can return to work and what duties you can really perform.
Some of the key requirements in the initial filing of the claim are:
- Timely filing. Claims for injuries due to an accident generally need to be filed within two years of the date of the accident or the date of death. Claims for illnesses may have longer time limits depending on when you became aware the illness was work-related. There are additional exceptions that our Oklahoma workers’ compensation lawyers review with each client.
- The right forms need to be used. Different forms are used depending on if you had an accident or if you suffered an illness. Claims are filed in the Oklahoma workers’ compensation court. We can help ensure you properly fill out and file the correct forms.
- Filing of the claim starts the wage payment clock. Claimants normally have to wait a week before wage benefits begin. To get reimbursement for the initial first week, claimants have to be out of work for 21 days. Claimants should get 70% of their average weekly wage from the second week forward until they can return to work, with some exceptions that we can explain.
- Filing the claims starts the medical reimbursement clock. Injured workers do not have an automatic right to get their medical bills paid. A formal claim has to be made.
Please understand that the filing of the claim is different than giving notice of the accident or illness to the employer. Employees need to comply with both the notice and the filing requirements to get their benefits.
What happens after the claim is filed?
Our lawyers explain the claims process to clients. After the claim is filed, the disputes get handled in one of these three main ways:
- When there is a disagreement as to eligibility, the extent of the injuries, the ability to work, or any other issue, either side can request a formal hearing.
- Short-term settlement. The employer and the employee can reach an agreement that the worker is eligible for wage-loss and medical benefits until the worker can return to work.
- Long-term settlement. Once a worker reaches maximum medical improvement, the parties can negotiate a lump-sum settlement of any open issues include wage benefits, vocational rehabilitation, and medical expenses.
If you are not sure what the legal process is after you file a claim, our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to help you understand.
Schedule a free initial consultation with an Oklahoma work injury lawyer today
Coping with an injury can be tough enough. Workers do not want to have to worry about how they will pay their daily bills or get medical help. If they cannot return to work, they will have questions about vocational rehabilitation. At Stipe Law Firm, an Oklahoma workers’ compensation attorney is ready to help you through this difficult time. We understand how to file paperwork properly so you can begin getting payments. We fight for all the compensation injured or ill workers are allowed by state law. Make the call to Stipe Law Firm at 918-558-2255 now or complete our contact form. From our McAlester office, we represent clients in Southeastern Oklahoma and throughout the state.