Workers' Compensation FAQ
If you have been injured in a work-related accident due to the negligence
of another, then you may be able to obtain compensation for the injuries
and financial hardships that you are experiencing. I am
Attorney Thompson, and I can provide you with the legal assistance that you need throughout
the duration of your case. The following are answers to commonly asked
workers' compensation, and it is important that you seek representation if you have further
Q: Can I file a claim?
Q: How should I notify my employer?
Q: What if I miss the deadline?
Q: How much will I get paid?
Q: How long will I receive payments?
Q: What benefits are available to me?
Q: Can I be fired for filing a workers' compensation claim?
Q: Am I eligible if I was responsible for my work-related injury?
Q: Are employees at small companies eligible?
Q: What if a third party caused my accident?
Q: Can I bring a claim against my employer for negligence?
Q: What is MMI?
Q: What is an FCE?
Q: What is mediation?
Q: What is a deposition?
Q: How much will it cost me to hire an attorney?
Can I file a claim?
If your injury occurred while you were acting in the line and scope of
your employment, then you can file a claim for workers’ compensation
benefits under the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act.
How should I notify my employer?
You should try and notify your immediate supervisor, or a member of Human
Resources as soon as you can. You need to provide notice within 5 days
of the date of your injury. If you suffer from occupational disease or
illness, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, you are required to notify your
employer within 5 days of discovering your illness or condition. If you
haven’t provided notice within 5 days, all is not lost, but it gets
more complicated. You should contact an attorney to discuss your options.
What if I miss the deadline?
If you were incapacitated, or otherwise unable to provide notice of your
injury, your five-day time typically begins to run when you were reasonably
expected to be able to provide notice. If you have missed your five day
time period, you should contact an Alabama attorney to discuss your options
How much will I get paid?
The amount of compensation you recover will depend on the nature and extent
of your injury, and any negative impact it has had on your ability to
earn an income. If your treating physician orders you to refrain from
work for longer than three days, you are entitled to 66.66% of your average
How long will I receive payments?
Typically you will receive payments for the duration of time your treating
physician has taken you out of work.
What benefits are available to me?
Under the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act, injured workers are
entitled to compensation for your injury and the detrimental impact it
has on your ability to earn an income in the future. You are also entitled
to medical benefits for reasonable and medically necessary treatment for
your work related injury. Your medical benefits are available to you for
as long as you require treatment. Your medical benefits do not expire.
Finally, vocational training is available for some injured workers.
Can I be fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim?
Technically, no. If you are fired for filing a claim for benefits under
the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act, you would have a viable claim
for retaliation. However, Alabama is an at-will employment state, which
means you can typically be fired for a good reason, a bad reason, or no
reason at all. It just should not be because you filed a claim for workers’
compensation benefits. If you feel you have been fired for filing a claim
for benefits, you should contact an attorney to discuss your options.
Am I eligible if I was responsible for my work-related injury?
Yes. The Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act is a no fault program.
The main requirement is that you were acting in the line and scope of
your work-related activities. If you have substantially deviated from
your work related activities, or if you were impaired by illegal drugs
or alcohol, you may not be eligible. If you employer has denied your claim
for such a reason, you should contact an attorney to discuss your options..
Are employees at small companies eligible?
If your employer employs five or more people, your are typically entitled
to workers’ compensation benefits. If you employer employs less
than five people, there are still some circumstances wherein you might
be entitled to benefits. However, there are some employment relationships
that are excluded from the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act. If
you have been denied benefits, you should contact an attorney to discuss
What if a third party caused my accident?
In some circumstances you may be entitled to benefits under the Alabama
Workers’ Compensation Act, and have a viable claim for negligence
against a third party. A typical example is if you are involved in a car
wreck while working as a courier or delivery driver, or if an injured
worker slips and falls on a slippery substance left on the floor by a
catering company, or other outside business.
Can I bring a claim against my employer for negligence?
Generally, you cannot. Typically your sole mechanism for relief is to
pursue a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. However, there
are limited circumstances where you can pursue a claim for liability against
co-employees. If your injury was caused by the willful removal of a safety
device, or the intention actions of a co-employee (like a punch to the
nose) you may be entitled to additional claims for relief. If you feel
your injury meets the aforementioned requirements, you should contact
an attorney to discuss your options.
What is MMI?
MMI stands for Maximum Medical Improvement, meaning that your treating
physician feels that your medical improvement has gotten as good as it’s
going to get. It doesn’t mean you are healed, but that your improvement
has reached a plateau.
What is an FCE?
FCE stands for Functional Capacity Evaluation, which is a common test
to evaluation your physical abilities and capacity. You can expect to
be evaluated for lifting and bending capacity, and the extent to which
your injury impairs your ability to perform certain job-related physical
What is Mediation?
Mediation is a formal settlement meeting that is conducted by someone
known as a mediator, who is a neutral third party that tries to facilitate
a settlement agreement between the parties.
What is a deposition?
A deposition is typically conducted in a law office where the attorney
for the employer gets to ask questions of the injured worker regarding
the nature and extent of your injuries. It is sworn testimony and can
be used in trial. Your lawyer should definitely be with you when a deposition
How much will it cost me to hire an attorney?
I operate on contingency fees when handling workers’ compensation
claims. You do not have to pay anything out-of-pocket upfront. I pay the
majority of your case expenses for you, on the condition that you pay
me back out of any proceeds that I recover. Additionally, I charge a fee
of 15% from the proceeds recovered.
Injured in an accident?
If you have suffered an injury, then there are various steps that you must
follow in order to pursue the damages that you need for your future. It
is also highly advisable that you obtain legal advice and representation
in your situation. I offer a
free case evaluation so that you may obtain legal advice and information in your case before
making any financial commitment to my firm. Seek my representation in
your case today!