With few exceptions, Missouri law requires that you report your injury to your employer within 30 days. (If you think you missed the deadline, call Keefe & Griffiths, PC immediately. We may be able to fit you under an exception in the law.) The employer is then allowed to select the doctor who treats you. Although you retain the right to see your own doctor, it is at your expense. Often, however, we can convince the insurance company to send you for a second opinion at their expense.
With few exceptions, Missouri law requires that your formal claim for compensation be filed within two years. If you think you missed the deadline, call us IMMEDIATELY. We may be able to extend the deadline.
Additionally, you may need to file for other benefits:
Long- or Short-term Disability
Family Medical Leave Act
The fee is the same whether you hire a lawyer at the beginning of the case or at the end. You should hire an attorney right away so that you get full value out of our work and get the maximum compensation you are entitled to under the Law.
Properly handled, your case should include complete medical records, expert opinions and testimony, legal research into statutes, regulations and case law specific to your claim, the discovery of other witness statements and testimony, and other important facts pertinent to your case.
Different types of proceedings take place throughout your case, each with its own purpose. For example, pre-hearings are usually used for status reports on the progress of employee’s treatment or investigation of the claim. Mediations are designed to get a judge involved in the negotiation process. Trials (also called “hearings”) allow the parties to introduce evidence that supports their case in a formal proceeding. The rules of evidence generally apply.
The different types of hearings can address a wide range of issues, including:
Lost Wages/Temporary Total Disability (TTD) or Partial Lost Wages (TPD)
Settlements/Permanent Partial or Permanent Total Disability (PPD and PTD)
Rulings by administrative law judges (in Missouri) or arbitrators (in Illinois) may be appealed by either side to the Industrial Commission. From there, the parties may appeal into the court system. There are strict deadlines, and the courts are strict about the form and wording of appeals.
It is unlikely that an unrepresented injured worker will successfully navigate this complex system to his best advantage. He can no better represent himself than a lawyer could construct his own house. They both lack the training and experience.
Injured workers often wait too long to hire a lawyer because they worry about the cost. This is penny wise and pound foolish. Our fee is a percentage of what we recover. It doesn’t depend on how long we represent you and all costs involved are advanced by us. There are no out of pocket fees and expenses to you.
Protect yourself --- hire an attorney immediately. It doesn’t cost any more to hire right away, and you can be sure that everything is handled properly and that all deadlines are met from the very beginning of your case.
Call Keefe & Griffiths, PC at 314.241.7243 or contact us online.