Were you injured on the job?
Tens of thousands of Missouri workers are injured on the job every year. If your are hurt on the job or suffer from an injury caused by your employment, you are entitled to up to three types of compensation from your employer under the Missouri Workers’ Compensation Law. A knowledgeable and experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can help you maximize the benefits you receive after being injured on the job. Call us today for a free work comp claim evaluation at (314) 542-9999 and we will help you determine whether or not you are receiving all of the workers’ compensation benefits afforded to you under Missouri state law. You can also choose to fill out our Free Case Consultation form and we will contact you.
In this video, Mark Cantor explains how workers’ compensation claims work in the state of Missouri. Mark covers what questions to ask when hiring a workers’ compensation lawyer, what documents are required to file a formal claim, how long the claim process takes and what it takes to win a workers’ compensation case. View the video for more details.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
- All of your medical expenses are to be authorized and paid by your employer;
- You are to receive two-thirds of your average weekly wage up to the maximum amount while you are unable to work; and
- You may receive a lump sum tax free disability payment for injuries resulting in permanent partial or total disability (PPD or PTD).
Your employer must pay all of your medical expenses, must replace your earnings and must compensate you if your injury results in disability. In Missouri, each body part is broken down on a permanent partial disability (PPD) chart which outlines how much value is placed on each compensable injury. For instance, your knee is worth two-thirds of 160 weeks of pay and your wrist is worth two-thirds of 175 weeks of pay. (The legal process for calculating the lump sum is based on two-thirds of your earnings and the value that is placed on the injured body part, as indicated on the PPD chart.) Employers, their chosen doctors and insurance companies constantly try to settle workers’ compensation cases for the least amount possible. If you have been injured while at work, you will benefit from the representation of a knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer in order to receive the maximum settlement possible for your injuries.
Unfortunately the law does not take into account the pain and suffering of injured workers. A good lawyer will send you to a doctor at their own expense and then argue that you have more disability at a higher value than is stated by the employer’s doctor and at a higher level than is stated on the PPD chart.
Workers’ compensation in Missouri outlines a value on the permanent partial disability chart for the following injuries:
On the Job Collisions
If you are working at the time you are involved in a car, truck or motorcycle accident, you may also have a workers’ compensation claim in addition to your civil action. The lawyers at Cantor & Burger have handled many auto collision cases where both a workers’ compensation and civil claim are filed.
Seeking Legal Representation for Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
Why should I hire a workers’ compensation lawyer? Insurance companies frequently get away with not paying all of the medical bills, cheating employees out of their lost wages and, arguing that they do not owe any money for lump sum payments for injured workers. It is our experience that an injured worker cannot recover the full value of their workers’ compensation claim unless they retain a lawyer who routinely tries these cases, has a reputation of winning, prepares their case for trial and has medical experts to support the worker’s claims.
If you have been injured on the job and are seeking to file a workers’ compensation claim, the experienced St. Louis workers’ compensation lawyers at Cantor & Burger can help. Mark Cantor is a leading workers’ compensation lawyer in Missouri and he personally handles all the work comp cases at Cantor & Burger. Recently, Mark set a legal precedent and made great case law in the Court of Appeals, Eastern District of Missouri on a wage issue for a woman raped at work. He has written books and articles on the best trial practices for properly handling workers’ compensation claims and regularly teaches other lawyers how to handle these cases. Call today for a free consultation at (314) 542-9999 or fill out our Free Case Consultation form and we will contact you.
At Cantor & Burger, we are experts in these work related personal injury cases and do not charge a fee unless we win. When we win your case, our fee for workers’ compensation cases is 25% (¼). We do not charge a fee for existing written offers or on any benefits that are paid voluntarily without our involvement. We will fight for the full value of your disabilities, lost wages and medical care.
What To Do If You are Injured on the Job
- Notify your employer. You must notify your employer “immediately” about your injury. Request that the employer prepare a written report. (The employer must do this even if they do not believe you.)
- Get free medical treatment. In Missouri, the company chooses the doctor who treats your injury. If you go to the doctor without prior authorization from your employer, the company will not pay the bill. Once the company doctor decides what treatment you need, the company must pay for all medical expenses, including physical therapy, medications, x-rays, CAT scans, MRIs, crutches, wrist splints, surgeries, bandages, etc.
- Tell the doctor about your injury, its cause and and the pain you have. Workers’ compensation does not provide money for pain and suffering, but your complaints make a diary of your permanent disability and will be important at the hearing of your case.
- Record the names of the supervisors to whom you reported your injury and the names of witnesses and phone numbers for each person. Make note of your job requirements (occupational injuries), days missed from work and out of pocket expenses (this includes mileage in some cases).
Finally, call the experienced workers’ compensation lawyers at Cantor & Burger for a free work comp claim consultation at (314) 542-9999 or fill out our Free Case Consultation form and we will contact you. We will discuss the facts of your case and the options available for your claim.
In this video, Missouri workers’ compensation attorney Mark Cantor of Cantor & Burger explains the workers’ compensation conspiracy in Missouri. Mark covers the origins of the law and various ways employers and their insurance companies try to pay out as little as possible for your injuries. View a full transcript of the Missouri Workers’ Compensation Conspiracy video.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits Explained
Medical Expenses: Your employer and their insurance company should cover all of your medical expenses from the medical providers that they authorize. If you do not like the doctor the insurance company chooses, the law is against you in Missouri and they will not cover the charges incurred by an unapproved medical provider (There are a few fact-based exceptions to this general rule of law, which is why you need aggressive representation.) Even if you are terribly injured, once you reach Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), the company does not owe you anymore weekly benefits (TTD- see below) unless you are totally disabled from the work force. Permanent and total disability (PTD) is a difficult standard, and we hire vocational experts to prove those cases every time.
Temporary Total Disability: Temporary Total Disability benefits are the wages that you receive when you are off for a work injury in Missouri. Temporary Total Disability is frequently called TTD and the Employer is required to pay TTD while you are unable to work. In Missouri, your temporary total disability is based on your average weekly wage and paid out at two-thirds of your average weekly wage. TTD is similar in Illinois workers’ compensation.
If the company physician returns you to work on “light duty” in Missouri, but the Employer has no light duty available, TTD is still owed to you. Temporary Total Disability benefits must be paid for the entirety of the time that you are off work and when an employer or insurance company attempts to cheat you out of this money, you need to seek legal counsel immediately. This is why we advise clients of Cantor & Burger to retain an attorney as soon as they injure themselves at work in order to secure all the benefits to which they are entitled. These benefits include the lost wages (TTD), all of your medical bills being paid, and a lump sum payment for permanent partial disability or period payments for a lifetime for permanent total disability.
At Cantor & Burger we do not charge a fee on benefits that are uncontested meaning that if the Employer or Insurer is paying you money already for being off work, we will simply monitor those benefits and will not charge a fee on any of those benefits unless they are terminated and a fight is required to have them reinstated.
Can an Employer Stop Paying Temporary Total Disability?
Unfortunately, many employers and insurers stop paying TTD even when it is still owed. This is why we encourage you to retain legal counsel early in the case and we do not charge a fee on uncontested benefits. However, when the money stops being paid we will be there to protect you. If you wait, it takes 45 days to get in front of a judge. (Usually the claim is acknowledged after 15 days and the employer has 30 days to file an answer to the claim for compensation.) This insurance practice is grossly unfair, how can an injured worker survive and keep all their family expenses and obligations if the employer is not paying them a weekly salary after being hurt on the job? We can help you and win injured employees their weekly benefits on a regular basis.
There are reasons that an employer may stop paying TTD under the Revised Missouri Statute of August 28, 2005. If you are fired or terminated for a reason unrelated to your workers’ compensation claim, for instance you show up late, the employer may fire you. If you then have surgery for a work related occupational injury such as carpal tunnel syndrome, the employer will need to pay for the medical expense, but will no longer be required to pay you while you are off work recovering from your surgery. Although work caused the underlying issue and surgery is required to repair that issue, preventing you from doing any gainful work, the conservative legislator in Missouri allows employers and their insurance companies from paying you. Thus, if you are fired for an unrelated reason, TTD is no longer owed. However, if the termination is actually in retaliation for you pursuing your valid work injury claim, we may chose to sue the employer for retaliatory discharge if the evidence is in your favor. It is illegal to fire a person for pursuing a Missouri workers’ compensation case.
Another pitfall to be cautious of is if you apply for unemployment benefits. Your employer may stop paying you temporary total disability benefits if you start receiving unemployment benefits. To receive unemployment you are making a statement to another government agency that you are ready, willing and able to work. This statement flies in the face of your workers’ compensation benefits, wherein you are saying that you are unable to work. Therefore, if you are receiving TTD from your Employer you should never, based on both ethics and the law, also seek to receive unemployment benefits.
If you have a Missouri workers’ compensation claim at any stage and you need assistance, please call the workers’ compensation lawyers at Cantor & Burger for a free consultation at (314) 542-9999 or fill out our Free Case Consultation form and we will contact you. Our phones are answered professionally 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
We will use our combined 40 years of experienced, our knowledge, and our financial resources to secure you the most money possible for your workers’ compensation claim.
More Information on Workers’ Compensation:
Cantor & Burger Articles Regarding Workers’ Compensation.
What You Should Do If You Are Injured At Work.
Missouri Workers’ Compensation Selected Statutes.
State of Illinois Workers’ Compensation Selected Statutes.
Missouri Workers’ Compensation Website.
Cantor & Burger Workers’ Compensation Successes
Common Worker’s Compensation Terminology