Michigan lawyer discusses if you can sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim.
Our law firm represents employees who have been seriously injured at work. We have seen workplace accidents result in amputations, paralysis, sensory loss, and even death. Unfortunately, workplace accident insurance benefits are limited, and they never fully compensate for some on-the-job injuries. If you are wondering if you can you can sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim in Michigan in order to receive more money for your on-the-job injury, the answer is ‘no’ but you can maximize what is paid through a settlement.
Michigan adopted its first workers’ compensation law in 1912. It was a grand bargain between labor and business. These workplace accident benefits are now the “exclusive remedy” when an employee gets hurt on the job. Employees are guaranteed workplace accident benefits regardless of fault. Employers get protection from civil lawsuits and do not have to pay other damages.
What benefits can I get?
These workplace accident benefits pay for all medical expenses including attendant care, travel expenses, and home modifications. Emergency room visits, doctor appointments, hospital stays, surgery, physical therapy, medications, and durable medical equipment should all be covered. Employees can select their own doctors after 28 days from the start of medical care.
Vocational rehabilitation is available when an employee must be retrained for a new career. It is possible to get this insurance to pay for education and other items needed for retraining.
This insurance pays lost wages equal to 80% of the employee’s after-tax average weekly. This calculation is based upon the highest 39 paid weeks during the 52 weeks before the injury occurred. It includes money for overtime, discontinued fringe benefits, and even second jobs. Payments continue for the entire length of disability but will be offset starting at age 65.
But what if benefits are prematurely stopped. Can you then sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim in Michigan if that happens? No, but you can file an Application for Mediation or Hearing to help force payment of additional benefits.
If you can’t sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim in Michigan then how do I maximize a settlement?
Knowing that you can’t sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim in Michigan makes having an experienced attorney on your side even more critical. They can help get you significant medical, vocational, and wage loss benefits. They can help maximize the amount paid through a settlement.
Many of our clients want to cash out and move on with their lives. Settlement is an attractive option because it stops the insurance company from interfering with future plans. Settlement money can be used to get medical treatment, pay off debt, find a new job, start a business, or just retire.
Insurance companies are not stupid, and they understand the value of a workplace accident claim. Settlements are based upon exposure for medical treatment, vocational rehabilitation, and wage loss. Age, education, medical condition, and work restrictions all play important roles.
The trick to getting a fair settlement is by showing the insurance company what it could have to pay out. This is done by developing medical and vocational evidence. Speak with an experienced workers’ comp lawyer who can help make sure fair value is paid.
Are there any exceptions to the general rule of not being able to sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim in Michigan?
There is one important exception to the general rule of not being able to sue your employer after a workers’ compensation claim in Michigan. Employers who do not have required workplace accident insurance lose the protection of the exclusive remedy provision. They can be sued for additional damages if negligence can be shown. Watch out for employers who offer to pay workplace accident benefits in exchange for signing away legal rights. Any settlement agreement should be reviewed by an experienced lawyer. Just because benefits have been paid does not mean they are now immune to a lawsuit.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented hurt and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (844) 316-8033 for a free consultation today.