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Why do you need an attorney for your Workers’ Compensation claim?

Posted by Katie Phipps | Nov 15, 2021 | 0 Comments

Honestly, you should not need an attorney. In South Carolina the Workers' Compensation system was set up to provide coverage for injured employees in an efficient manner. It is no fault system, meaning even if your accident happened partially or totally because of your own negligence, it is usually still compensable. It is administrative so hearing can be set within months before Commissioners who know the law.

The unfortunate reality is that far too often the workers' compensation system does not work as it was intended to for Claimants. I know because I worked for 17 years as a defense attorney representing carriers. During those years, I worked on hundreds of claims where adjusters simply would not respond to me and they were my clients. This unresponsiveness happens for many reasons but often it is simply because of the number of claims they are handling at any given time. They may be juggling 200 or even 300 files all needing medical appointments set and TTD payments made. The end result, may mean you go weeks without the medical or indemnity benefits you deserve. Therefore, in many instances, injured workers' will need an advocate who knows how to get the carrier's attention. Remember, this system was created for you and it should be working for you!

In addition, the law, especially when it comes to the final settlement amount you are owed is often complex. Remember, even if you are talking to the adjuster or defense attorney about resolving your claim, they work for the carrier. They do not represent you and it is ultimately their job to limit the defendant's monetary exposure. Having an advocate working for you increases you chances of getting what you deserve. 

About the Author

Katie Phipps

For more than 17 years, Katie had a successful practice at two of South Carolina's largest workers' compensation defense firms. During that time, she realized her favorite part of the job was helping Pro Se claimants navigate the settlement process. As a lawyer for the insurance carrier, she ofte...


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