You load sixteen tons, what do you get?
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t go
I owe my soul to the company store
In 1955, Tennessee Ernie Ford had a surprise number one hit when he recorded a version of this coal miner’s lament. Compared to the sugary pop songs and ballads that dominated the charts, Sixteen Tons was hauntingly dark. But it struck a chord.
It speaks to everyone who works hard just to put food on the table and keep a roof over their family’s head. People who know that the boss man doesn’t give a damn about you. All that matters to the company is that you keep loading that coal.
That attitude toward workers is still widespread, which is why our firm regularly represents Bergen County residents who have been injured on the job and deserve workers’ compensation.
Filing for Workers’ Compensation
If you have been injured on the job in New Jersey, you may be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits can cover your medical care and a portion of the wages you lose due to a temporary or permanent disability.
The first step to take if you think you may be owed workers’ compensation benefits is to visit your doctor. Then follow the treatment plan for your injuries.
Next, you may want to reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney. While it is possible to represent yourself, you should really be focused on healing, not pushing around paperwork and fighting with various insurance companies.
Whether you are going it alone or seeking representation, the next step is filing a written notice of your injury with your employer. Then the ball is in your employer’s court for a bit. They will contact the company’s insurance provider and see if you are eligible for compensation. The state of New Jersey will also be notified of your injury.
There will be lots of paperwork and back and forth, and they will either decide to pay you for your injuries or deny your claim. If your claim is denied, you can appeal.
Beyond Workers’ Compensation
If it was not your employer’s fault, or fellow employee’s fault, that you were injured, you may also consider filing a lawsuit against whoever caused your injury. These so-called third-party claims ensure that you are fully compensated for your injuries and that the responsible parties are held accountable.
Third-party claims are commonly filed against property owners, contractors, and maintenance companies whose negligence caused your injury. Anyone who is not your employer or fellow employee may be sued in a third-party lawsuit.
How Much Will This Cost Me?
Levin & Malkin never charges any up-front legal fees in workplace injury cases.
In Workers’ Compensation cases, the court typically requires the insurance company to pay our legal fees. If we help you file a claim against a third party, our fee is contingent upon you winning your case. If you don’t get paid, neither do we. If you have been injured on the job, and want to ensure you get the compensation you deserve, please contact our office to schedule an initial consultation. Our office is in Hackensack, but if necessary we can come to you at your home or in the hospital to assess whether you have a viable case.
Posted in: Work Accidents