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WORK RELATED INJURIES - WORKERS' COMPENSATION - BENEFITS FOR THE INJURED

Workers that are injured at work must make certain that they obtain all of the benefits that they are due under the Workers' Compensation Act. In Rhode Island and Massachusetts there are courts that just deal with workers' compensation benefits. In Rhode Island, the court is the Rhode Island Workers' Compensation Court and in Massachusetts, the court is the Department of Industrial Accidents.

If the injured worker does not receive the benefits he or she is entitled to then the benefits can be enforced in the appropriate workers' compensation court. Sometimes these benefits are not complex and consist simply of wage replacement while disabled and unable to work and medical bills being paid.

Other times the benefits to the injured worker or the family of the injured worker are complex and the injured worker or the injured workers family must contact an experienced worker's compensation attorney to enforce the benefits they are entitled to in the proper worker's compensation court.

Weekly workers' compensation is paid to replace wages that the injured worker can no longer earn while disabled or to pay to the family of the injured worker if he becomes deceased from work related injuries. The weekly workers' compensation that is paid to replace wages can be total disability, partial disability or it can simply supplement existing wages if the injured worker is not earning as much as he or she used to because of the injury. Therefore, if the injured worker is disabled and out of work he or she will receive total or partial disability payments. Even if the injured worker is working but not earning as much, then he or she will receive weekly payments to supplement the reduced wages that are being paid.

Medical bills are also paid through workers' compensation to insure the injured worker receives the proper medical treatment for his or her work related injury. If these medical bills are not getting paid, or if the injured worker is being refused treatment that his physician would like to perform or being refused a referral to a new physician then the injured worker can go into the appropriate workers' compensation court to enforce payment for this necessitated medical treatment.

In addition to medical treatment including physical therapy, the injured worker is also entitled to vocational rehabilitation and vocational and retraining services if the injured worker is unable to return to his or her prior employment. Benefits are also available for scarring and loss of function including all types of related disfigurement. If the injured worker is not going to return to his or her previous employment, settlements are often negotiated to properly close out the case.

The involvement of social security disability and future medicare also complicates the benefits that the injured worker is entitled to and the injured worker must make certain that he or she receives all of the benefits that he or she is entitled to.

It is extremely important to obtain the services of an experienced workers' compensation attorney in order to properly enforce and collect all of the benefits the injured worker or the family of the injured worker is entitled to. Karns Law Group is extremely experienced in handling all aspects of workers' compensation and has handled cases in Rhode Island and Massachusetts since 1974.

If you or someone you know has suffered a work related injury, then contact Karns Law Group at 1-888-KarnsLaw for a free consultation. There is no fee unless we are successful. To review your rights under the Rhode Island Workers' Compensation Act and Rhode Island Workers' Compensation Court see www.dlt.ri.gov/wc/. To review your rights in Massachusetts under the Department of Industrial Accidents see www.mass.gov/lwd/workers-compensation/dia/.

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