Someday this can all be behind you—an accident on the job causing burns and pain, a disruption to your work and ability to support yourself.
The Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) oversees workers’ comp. It reported accepting 1,913 claims for burns in 2020. Those L&I claims amounted to $4.4 million in benefits for injured workers.
As an employee in Washington, you’re entitled to benefits after suffering a burn injury on the job, no matter how the accident happened or who caused it. But the workers’ comp system can make it difficult for you to collect everything you’re owed.
They might deny your benefits. They might award you less than the full amount you should receive. They might end your benefits prematurely.
You can get past the obstacles they throw up with help from an experienced workers’ comp attorney.
Bothwell & Hamill helps people win workers’ comp benefits in Yakima, Kennewick, Sunnyside, Spokane, Richland, Ellensburg, Wenatchee, Walla Walla and anywhere in Central Washington.
Burn damage to your skin can happen in any way: heat, friction, electricity, chemicals, radiation and cold (frostbite).
The severity of your burn can be any type: first, second, third or fourth degree.
With all of them, the first thing you should do after suffering a burn injury on the job is get medical attention.
That may be obvious with third and fourth-degree burns. Those are serious, sometimes life-threatening emergencies.
But even with less severe burns, if they happened at work, you should get medical attention to establish your workers’ comp claim.
Follow these steps:
Why talk to a lawyer if your employer or the workers’ comp insurance company appears to be cooperating with your claim?
Because they may not be telling you everything you should receive. And they may try to get you to say something that hurts your workers’ comp claim down the line.
Companies deal with this system all the time. They could take advantage of the fact that everyday workers don’t know all the ins and outs.
If you get a lawyer supporting your claim from early on, you can protect your rights and get the maximum benefits available.
Start with a free consultation about your situation.
When you’re filing a workers’ comp claim for a burn injury, L&I will look for you to provide “objective findings.”
That means medical evidence of your injury, created by your doctor or other health care workers who have treated your burns.
Your evidence can include:
This is one reason why getting medical care is important from the beginning. Your medical care is where your evidence comes from to support your workers’ comp claim.
But this is also an area where the workers’ comp system can try to steer you away from getting the most benefits possible, by sending you to a company-approved doctor instead of a doctor of your choice. You have the right to choose a doctor who puts your needs first.
Your workers’ comp lawyer can make sure your claim, including your medical care, are on track to give you the financial support you need.
With the right support, the trauma from a burn injury on the job doesn’t have to control you. You can stay on stable ground financially and make it to better times.
You might have a lot of questions. Bothwell & Hamill has answers.Common Questions »