Workers' Compensation Lawyer in Columbia, SC
Have you recently been injured or made ill on the job in Columbia, S.C.? If so, you could be eligible to claim workers’ compensation benefits from your employer’s policy. While most employees are eligible for benefits under South Carolina’s workers’ compensation laws, getting what you’re entitled to is not always simple or straightforward. Fortunately, with a Columbia workers’ compensation lawyer from the Law Offices of S. Chris Davis on your side, you’ll have a better chance of getting the benefits you’re entitled to while you recover and get back on your feet.
Our team is proud to stand up for the workers in our Columbia community. If you’ve been hurt, let us help you to seek the benefits you deserve. Has your workers’ compensation claim already been denied by your employer or their insurer? We can help you appeal this decision. Whatever your situation, our team has the experience necessary to make a difference for you. Call us or reach out to us online to schedule a free consultation today.
Common Workplace Accidents and Injuries in Columbia, SC
Workers’ compensation benefits are made available under all kinds of work-related circumstances that result in injury. Examples of common workplace accidents that occur in Columbia include:
- Slip/trip and falls
- Falls from heights, including ladder and scaffolding accidents
- Fires and explosions
- Defective/unsafe equipment accidents
- Forklift/crane/cherry picker accidents
- Being struck by falling objects
- Entanglement accidents
- Crush accidents
- Chemical spills
- Trench or building collapses
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Animal attacks
- Workplace violence
Injuries and other medical conditions that workers often suffer due to the risks and conditions of their jobs include:
- Heat stroke or frostbite/hypothermia
- Broken bones
- Lacerations and abrasions
- Degloving injuries
- Ligament, tendon, and muscle tears
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Nerve injury
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Facial injuries
- Hearing or vision loss
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Loss of body parts or bodily function
- Viral or bacterial disease
What Do South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Benefits Cover?
In South Carolina, the workers’ compensation system provides financial benefits to workers who sustain a work injury or occupational illness in the course and scope of their employment. These benefits are intended to help the worker make as full a recovery as possible from their work-related injury or illness. In recognition of the fact that being injured on the job often requires recovery time, benefits may include lost wages if the worker misses time from their job or has to take a modified-duty role during their recovery.
What Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits Are Available?
The South Carolina workers’ comp system provides three main types of benefits to injured and ill workers:
- Medical benefits – An employee who suffers a work-related injury or illness is entitled to have their employer’s worker’s compensation insurance policy cover the cost of medical treatment that is reasonably expected to improve the employee’s physical condition.
- Wage replacement – When a worker temporarily misses time from work during their recovery from a work injury or occupational illness, they may be entitled to partial replacement of their wages, equal to two-thirds of their average weekly wage. A worker who returns to a part-time or alternative-duty position that pays less than their average weekly wage is entitled to partial replacement of the difference between their average weekly wage and their temporarily reduced income.
- Disability benefits – When a work injury or occupational disease reaches maximum medical improvement, or the point where no further treatment is expected to improve the worker’s condition, a worker who is diagnosed with permanent disability or impairment may be entitled to payments based on the type and severity of disability sustained.
How to File a Workers’ Comp Claim in South Carolina
To file a workers’ compensation claim in South Carolina, you’ll need to follow several specific steps. Working with attorney Chris Davis can help to ensure that each of these steps is completed efficiently and effectively so that you don’t miss out on the opportunity to collect rightful compensation:
- Report your work injury or occupational illness to your employer as soon as possible
- Seek prompt medical treatment; in South Carolina, your employer has the right to designate the provider who is permitted to treat your work-related injury or illness in the long-term, although you may seek emergency treatment with any provider you choose
- Make sure that your employer files a report of your claim with the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission
- If your employer fails to file your claim with the Commission or otherwise refuses to provide you with workers’ comp benefits, you can file a Form 50 with the Commission to start a formal workers’ compensation claim with the state
- Request a hearing before a workers’ compensation commissioner (if necessary)
- If you are dissatisfied with the commissioner’s decision, you may seek an administrative appeal before a panel of the commission, or from there to the South Carolina courts.
How Long Does It Take to Receive Workers’ Comp Benefits?
When you suffer a work injury or occupational illness, your employer can begin paying medical benefits immediately upon receipt of notice of your injury or illness. However, if your work-related injury or illness causes you to miss work, you must miss at least seven days of work before you can begin to receive wage replacement benefits. If you miss at least 14 days from work, you will be reimbursed for the first seven days you missed.