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Here in Kansas, the Final Four is a big deal, at least to many people. Recently, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration included electrical injuries on the agency’s Fatal Four list. OSHA estimates that the four injuries on this list — electrocutions, falls, caught between and struck by — account for about half the fatal construction site injuries in Kansas.
Electrical injuries are a “double whammy.” A large surge of electrical energy triggers the no-let-go response, or an involuntary muscle contraction in the hand. As a result of the extended exposure to temperatures hotter than the sun’s surface, these workers often sustain catastrophic burns. Alternatively, the arc blast could propel a victim through the air, causing a very hard fall.
A few simple employer precautions, like pointing out power lines to workers and requiring them to use double-grounded or double-insulated power tools, could eliminate the risk of electrocution injury. Sadly, employers are in such a hurry to finish projects that they simply don’t take time out to do these things. When employers do not protect people, the experienced Topeka electrical injury lawyers at Palmer Law Group step into action. We quickly get to work for you, so you get the financial benefits you need.
Almost any injury lawyer can handle a simple work injury case. But, as outlined below, electrocution cases are extremely complex. Additionally, because of the severe injuries these victims sustain, an electrical injury lawyer must hit the ground running and work hard to obtain the compensation victims and families desperately need.
At the Palmer Law Group, our Topeka electrical injury lawyers are well-positioned to do these things, because of our:
These three layers combine to produce results that exceed our clients’ expectations, not only in terms of settlement value, but in terms of the time it takes to obtain a favorable settlement.
Normally, workers’ compensation is the exclusive remedy for job injury victims in Kansas. This no-fault insurance compensates injured workers for their medical bills and lost wages.
Until recently, the workers’ compensation system was rather straightforward and, in many cases, required little more than filing paperwork. Quite frankly, a lawyer often just got in the way. Suddenly, the system changed. The initial denial rate has increased 25 percent since 2018. So, unless victims are willing to settle their claims for pennies on the dollar, they need tough electrical injury lawyers in their corner.
Generally, workers’ compensation insurance companies pay all reasonably necessary medical bills, from the first moment of emergency care to the last day of physical therapy. By law, the insurance company must also pay transportation, prescription drug, and all other ancillary medical costs.
These same laws require the insurance company to pay two-thirds of the victim’s average weekly wage for the duration of a temporary disability. If the electrocution or other job-related injury permanently disabled the victim, either partially or totally, a lump-sum payment is usually available.
Unfortunately for victims, these laws aren’t very specific. For example, insurance adjusters and job injury victims interpret a phrase like “reasonably necessary medical expenses” very differently. Adjusters normally use accountant-created charts and tables to determine payment. Victims go by what their doctors tell them.
Sometimes, workers’ compensation is not the exclusive remedy in these situations. And sometimes workers’ comp isn’t available at all.
Unsafe wires and machines are very common at construction sites. These manufacturers care little or nothing about worker safety. If a dangerous or defective product caused injury, a Topeka electrical injury attorney may be able to file a legal action against that product manufacturer.
Employers are strictly liable for work-related injuries, and manufacturers are strictly liable for the injuries their defective products cause. Sometimes, designers take shortcuts, often by removing critical safety features; sometimes engineers take shortcuts, often by using cheap, imported parts.
Manufacturers cannot hide behind workers’ compensation laws to avoid facing the music. Likewise, employers cannot ignore laws or lie to insurance companies and get away with it.
As mentioned, state law requires most bosses to buy workers’ compensation insurance, but inspectors don’t enforce this law very aggressively. Therefore, many bosses ignore it. Other bosses buy fake insurance policies that satisfy inspectors but don’t compensate victims.
In both situations, a Topeka electrocution injury lawyer can file a legal claim directly against the manufacturer or employer. If a victim/plaintiff proves negligence, or a lack of care, additional compensation is available. This additional compensation almost always includes money for emotional distress and other noneconomic damages. It could also include substantial punitive damages.
Our experience, dedication, and accessibility let us do more than fight for victims in court. It allows us to serve as an out-of-court resource.
What Are Some Common Electrocution Injuries?
Sudden and powerful surges of electrical energy could cause serious burns, permanent nerve injuries, and serious falls.
Even momentary contact with a live wire usually causes severe third-degree burns. These injuries require extensive, and expensive, treatment at specialty regional burn centers. Furthermore, the body’s nerve center relies on electrical impulses. A power surge in the body does the same kind of damage as a power surge in a laptop. Finally, the powerful surge of electricity generally throws victims through the air. That motion alone, not to mention the impact, often causes a fatal or permanent injury.
Why Did My Workers’ Compensation Claim Get Denied?
Missed deadlines, failure to seek medical treatment, and alleged substance use may be the most common denial reasons.
Workers’ comp cases have very tight deadlines. Frequently, workers timely file claims, but their notices get misdirected or otherwise lost in the shuffle. Furthermore, a surprising number of accident victims don’t immediately see a doctor, usually because adrenaline masks their pain. Delayed treatment gives a claims examiner an excuse to deny a claim. Finally, many claims examiners conclude that the victim was “on drugs” based on flimsy evidence, like physical symptoms.
Why Does My Lawyer Want to Settle My Case?
Out-of-court settlements don’t just benefit insurance companies and Topeka electrical accident lawyers. They primarily benefit victims. Frequently, these cases take many months to settle, so victims are eager to move on with their lives. Additionally, a negotiated settlement gives a victim additional control over the outcome. But the bottom line is that these settlements ensure that victims get their checks sooner.
Work injury victims need and deserve substantial compensation, but it’s only available if a Topeka electrocution lawyer from the Palmer Law Group fights for it.
”My experience at Palmer Law Group was highly favorable. They always treated me with respect & care. I am confident that my attorney, Dustin Van Dyke, spent long hours on my case and kept me updated on where we stood. I am confident that I was always told the truth as new information arose. I appreciate the honesty & integrity above all. I highly recommend this law firm.” – Georgie Foster (Google Review)
LJ Leatherman passionately believes in fair and dedicated representation for individuals who have been affected by automobile negligence, electrical injuries, firearm litigation, wrongful death, and third-party claims against insurance companies and all other areas of personal injury litigation. [Read More]