Until you’ve actually been hurt at work, it’s probably fair to say that you don’t understand just how complex, confusing, and frustrating it can be to get the compensation you need to fully recover from your injuries and move on with your life. A lot of workers believe that their companies will take care of their every need if they get hurt while on the clock or because the employer made a mistake. But, sadly, it just doesn’t work out that way for everyone.
In reality, injured workers usually face a lot of difficulties after they are hurt at work, and many of those challenges have very little to do with the actual physical injury they received. For people who are already trying to get better and get back to work, the most painful and long-lasting burden is often largely financial. Medical costs, mortgage payments, daily expenses, and other bills add up fast when you’re not working, and letting it all go to collections while you wait can leave you and your family in serious financial trouble, even long after your injury has healed.
Won’t My Employer Pay All My Bills If I’m Hurt at Work?
If you’ve been hurt at work in Texas, chances are that your employer will be responsible for paying for some portion of your medical care and time away from work, but it isn’t always clear how to go about getting the compensation you deserve. This process is often more complicated than it seems like it should be, and it’s a mistake to just assume that your employer will “take care of everything.”
In truth, whether or not your employer will eventually be responsible for paying your bills could depend on:
- If your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance
- If your employer is a “non-subscriber,” in which case you may need to file a work injury lawsuit to get compensation for your injuries
- If there are others responsible for your injury, such as an equipment manufacturer or other third party
- If your employer is legally liable for how you were hurt
- If your work injury was caused by your employer’s negligence
- If you were at fault for the accident
- If you already signed away your rights
- If the company chooses to fight your claim aggressively
- Any other complicating factors that apply specifically to your case
The point is that your compensation for a work injury isn’t guaranteed, and it can take a time—sometimes a lot of time—to get results in complicated cases. While filing a work injury claim is an important step that can help you over the long term, it doesn’t necessarily provide financial solutions that will help you right now. Outside of a few exceptions, such as “maintenance and cure” payments for injured seamen, most workers are left waiting for a settlement to provide financial relief.
Employers and their insurance companies know that you are probably feeling a financial strain after you’ve been hurt. To protect their own bottom lines, they will sometimes offer a much lower settlement up front. Although it can be tempting to take anything you’re offered when creditors are breathing down your neck, remember that you won’t be able to reopen your case later if you are willing to take less now. If you’re worried about paying bills and getting a fair settlement for your injuries, first talk to someone who can help you understand what your case is worth and how you can make ends meet in the meantime.
How Can I Take Care of My Bills While I’m Still Recovering From a Work Injury?
When you were hurt at work, it’s likely that you were almost immediately thrust into a world populated by claims adjusters, company representatives, workers’ compensation claims, medical appointments, and endless documents and forms. And, depending on the circumstances of your injury, you could additionally be dealing with liability insurance companies, third parties, creditors, hospital billing offices, and other. Under all that pressure, you’re probably getting increasingly worried about:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages while you’re off work
- Rent and mortgage payments
- Phone bills
- Electricity bills
- Loans and loan payments
- Food and other grocery bills
- Car and truck payments
- Childcare costs
- And many other expenses
The good news is that there are a lot of different ways to make sure you can pay your medical bills and other bills while you are waiting for a settlement. After talking with us, clients are often relieved to find out that they do have options and can make it work. The bad news is that, depending on your situation, the solutions can be very different, and you may need an attorney’s help to sort out what your options really are.
VB Attorneys has a long history of helping injured workers both survive the legal process and ultimately resolve their cases. If you need help meeting your financial obligation after an injury, we can go over all the options with you over the phone or at an in-person meeting with one of our lawyers. During the call, we will explain the different ways you can get your bills paid, or at least delayed, until you get a settlement in your case. You may also qualify for our financial assistance program, and we can talk to you about what that means and when it might be a good option for you.
The best way to find out all your options for paying your bills is to call us and schedule a time to talk. Our toll-free number is 1-877-724-7800, and your call is free and completely confidential.