After being involved in an injury while performing employment duties, workers may claim a lump sum workers’ compensation settlement or enjoy receiving weekly benefits over the period. There are different views about settling a workers’ compensation case in Mississippi, whether it may or may not benefit the worker and what the worker has to sacrifice in return. Therefore, it is suggested to seek professional legal advice before going all out and filing an occupational injury claim.
Fatal work injuries in 2019 aggregated to 59 in Mississippi, as per the reports of the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics. It was noted that the number of work-related deaths in the state was down 24% from the 78 in 2018. Fatal occupational injuries in Mississippi have ranged from a high of 128 in 1995 and 1999 to a low of 59 in 2019. Across the nation, a total of 5,333 fatal occupational injuries were recorded in 2019, a 2% increase from the 5,250 in 2018, according to the data reported by the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) program. The 5,333 fatal work-related injuries in 2019 represent the largest annual number since 2007.
Before Seeking a Settlement in a Workers’ Compensation Case in Mississippi:
An injured worker may choose to prefer a one-time settlement over continuous weekly payouts. It is suggested to seek legal consultation before deciding to accept a lump sum payment, no matter how tempting such a payout may appear.
You should wait until you have reached your Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), as it makes sure that you have enough funds to afford any excess health care or additional medical treatment you may require in the future. You could end up paying for any additional medical treatment at your own expense if you settle before this point.
Disadvantages and Risks of a Workers’ Compensation Settlement:
Choosing a workers’ compensation settlement over weekly claim benefits comes with certain risk factors:
- Keeping in view the severity of your injuries, you may be awarded compensation that you do not deserve and is very low
- Weekly benefits of the workers’ compensation case in Mississippi are discontinued once the settlement award is finalized
- Settlements in a compensation case do not consider the trauma and suffering endured by the victim
- Employees who adopted for receiving weekly benefits can reopen a personal injury claim within five years of receiving the last payment. However, employees who adopted a lump sum cannot reopen a claim once the compensation amount has been settled in full
Advantages of a Workers’ Compensation Settlement:
While there are some risks associated with choosing a final workers’ compensation settlement, there are various advantages as well. Injured employees who accept a lump sum settlement:
- Receive a tax-free final settlement
- Do not have to deal with the insurers
- Are free to seek medical assistance from doctors of their choosing
- Are free to utilize the funds received in any way they desire
- Are not subject to independent medical assessments
- Can accept a new job without risking benefits received
For some employees, these benefits may undermine any disadvantages, especially when such funds allow workers to get on with their lives and recover swiftly from their suffering.
Negotiation Process of Workers’ Compensation Settlement:
Since a workers’ compensation settlement does not account for any physical or mental trauma, it is essential to ensure that the award is calculated in a fair and impartial way. A just settlement incorporates certain factors which are perfectly understood by experienced attorneys. In the calculation of your financial compensation award, other contributing factors should also be considered, such as:
- Future medical treatments you may need
- Your ongoing medical expenses
- Lost earnings
- Your prognosis for making a full recovery
- Loss of future earning ability
The Settlement Must Be Approved:
Any proposed settlement award for an injured employee must be appropriately reviewed and approved by the commission before being awarded. The commission will review all proposed provisions and agreements, as well as the weekly benefits received by the injured victim compared to the total settlement payout. For approval and review, the victim’s lawyer should file a request with the commission, along with the necessary paperwork.
About Workers’ Compensation Lawyers:
If you or your loved ones are involved in an accident or injury while performing your employment duties, pick up the phone and contact our law office today. We are a team of qualified attorneys who will represent your workers’ compensation case in Mississippi. Our customer support team will assist you in booking a free preliminary evaluation of your case.