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Charleston Workers' Compensation Lawyer

People suffering work place accident injuries often find their financial future at risk. Not only is their hard-earned career in danger, but they’re left wondering how they’ll pay for their medical treatment and provide for their families. Let our worker's compensation attorneys bring ease to these stresses.

If you face these uncertainties, it’s crucial to hire a trusted workers’ compensation attorney in Charleston, SC immediately. Navigating the legal system can be tricky, and attempting to do it alone can have disastrous, long-lasting effects. Trust Hoffman Law Firm instead.

Our workers’ compensation attorneys are skilled in SC law and will help facilitate effective communication with your employer and its insurance company, always serving as your loyal advocate here in Charleston, SC.

Our Charleston law firm of dedicated workers' comp lawyers will work diligently to ensure you’re taken care of after your work place accident, both physically and financially. We understand that workers’ compensation benefits can help get your future back on track – and give you and your family much-needed peace of mind.

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Won Client a $1.2 Million Settlement

Recovered for Injured Worker in Charleston, SC During Workers' Comp Claim

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What is Workers’ Compensation?

Workers’ Compensation is a kind of insurance that provides much-needed benefits to employees who are injured or contract an illness as a direct result of their job. The employer’s insurance company covers the cost of medical care and pays out weekly cash benefits.

Fault is not a factor, which means that a worker’s compensation eligibility is not dependent on their actions. As long as the illness or injury is work-related, they are entitled to benefits. If the Workers’ Comp claim is denied, the employee may need to appeal to the Workers’ Compensation Board or pursue legal action to recover compensation.

Who pays for workers compensation?
The employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance carrier is responsible for payment after your on-the-job injury or illness.

What to Do After a Workplace Accident in South Carolina

If you’ve been hurt on the job, it’s important to report your work related injury immediately. The steps that follow are essential as well in order to secure the work place benefits you deserve.

We’ve briefly outlined the process below, but a more detailed explanation can be found here.

First and foremost, it is essential to report any workplace accident to your employer immediately. Subsequently, it is important to make sure that your legal claim has been officially filed. Document and store detailed records of the incident.

Furthermore, it is important to document the scene of the accident. Moreover, it is important to find out which doctors your workers’ compensation insurance will cover. You should get medical treatment for any injury or illness that is related to the accident.

Lastly, you should hire an experienced workers’ compensation law firm.

At Hoffman Law Firm, we offer years of accident claim experience in the Lowcountry. Charleston is home and we believe in protecting our community and the valuable people who live here. We work on a contingency basis, so you don't have to worry about paying us until we win your case. Plus, we offer a free consultation to get you started. So, put your trust in us and let us make your situation a little easier after a workplace accident. We are ready with your free case review today!

Understanding South Carolina Workers' Compensation Benefits After An On The Job Injury

According to our South Carolina's Workers’ Compensation Act, injured workers are entitled to employee benefits, including compensation for:

  • Medical treatment
  • Lost wages
  • Permanent disability

Those who have faced an on the job injury often worry that filing a workers’ comp claim may cause them to lose their job. But there are legal statutes in place to protect injured workers, ensuring your employer cannot fire you for pursuing work place benefits. That’s why it’s important to know your rights, and to never let your employer bully you or intimidate you.

It’s also crucial to note that, because workers’ comp is a no-fault system, you’re eligible for compensation even if you caused your work place accident or were partly to blame.

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How Does the Workers’ Compensation Process Work?

Here our Workers’ Comp lawyers have simplified the process, offering a breakdown of what to expect during your worker's comp claim:

Workplace accident occurs.
Any employee who is injured in a workplace accident (on-site) or during their shift (off-site) is eligible for benefits.

Injury is reported to the employer.
It is important that an injured worker reports the on-the-job injury to their employer immediately.

The employee seeks medical treatment.
Be sure to receive medical attention as soon as possible. The employer’s insurance company will provide a “company doctor” or a list of approved physicians that are in-network. Injured workers may receive a second opinion from a physician who is out of network, but they are responsible for covering the cost.

Workers’ Comp claim is filed.
Once they have been notified of the on-the-job injury, the employer will file a Workers’ Compensation claim with their insurance company.

Benefits are paid out.
If the claim is approved, the insurance company will begin to disburse weekly compensation payments. If the claim is disputed, consult an experienced Workers’ Comp lawyer to learn more about your options moving forward – and to fight for the benefits you deserve.

Common Workplace Accidents in South Carolina

  • Overexertion can take place when lifting, pulling, pushing, throwing, holding, or carrying objects.
  • Fall on the same level is a trip or slip from encountering loose wires, wet floors, or even a drawer left open causing you to fall. 
  • Fall to a lower level is falling from a height, like from a roof or a ladder.
  • Hit by object or equipment involves contact that results in work related injury.
  • Roadway accidents involve motorized land vehicles including trucks, motorcycles, traitors, forklifts, etc. 
  • Slip and trip accidents occur when an employee falls after slipping or tripping.
  • Caught in or compressed by equipment or objects typically results in a body part that is crushed or stuck in a piece of equipment. For example: workers caught by moving machinery or crushed between two heavy objects.
  • Repetitive motions may involve microtasks, such as typing or bending down.

Common On The Job Injuries in South Carolina

  • Spinal cord injuries within the lower back and neck including bulging and herniated discs, cervical and lumbar fusions, broken or fractured vertebrae, and degenerative disc disease caused from years of repetitive movement.
  • Broken bones injuries are often caused by a fall or being hit by a machine and may result in amputations, lacerations, and burns.
  • Lung injuries due to toxic fumes being inhaled or long hours working in factories.
  • Shoulder injuries due to rotator cuff tears, dislocation or damaging elements that ultimately require shoulder replacement.
  •  Knee injuries such as ruptured MCL or ACL ligaments, disjointed knees, and degraded conditions requiring entire knee replacement.
  • Overexertion injuries due to overworked or pulled muscles and ligaments within different parts of the body.
  •  Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) or Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) refers to prolonged inflammation or pain after a leg or arm injury.
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Trusted workers' comp lawyers to address your employer and their insurance company. Schedule your initial free consultation today!

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Disability Benefits for Workers Compensation Claims

The rules surrounding disability benefits are very complex, so it is best to entrust your case to a qualified Workers’ Comp lawyer. Our team can help determine if you are eligible for any of the following benefits:

  • Temporary partial disability
    Similar to above, these benefits are paid out for a limited amount of time. But in this case, the employee is about to do some work while they recover. Their doctor may recommend working half a day or performing lighter duty tasks.
  • Temporary total disability
    These types of injuries or illnesses prevent the employee from working at all, but only for a limited period of time. While they are currently unable to perform their job duties, they are expected to recover enough to return to work – at which point the payments will end.
  • Permanent partial disability
    These benefits provide for workers who have suffered permanent damage. They can perform some job functions, but are not expected to recover any further.
  • Permanent total disability
    Workplace accidents that result in permanent total disability are the most severe, often preventing the employee from ever returning to work. Note: The specific rules vary from state to state, but in some cases, the worker does not have to be completely incapacitated or unable to work at all in order to receive these benefits.

Understanding Your Employer’s Role During The Workers’ Comp Process

It is the worker’s responsibility to report their on-the-job injury to their employer, but after they have been notified, here are the steps the employer should follow to advance the claims process:

Think safety first.
If unsafe working conditions caused the accident, the employer’s first priority should be preventing further injury. Implementing new safety policies, providing better training, or removing hazards may be required to keep other employees safe and healthy.

File a claim.
After the accident, the employer will file a Workers’ Comp claim with their insurance carrier, notifying them of the on-the-job injury or illness.

Stay in touch with the insurance company.
The employer must maintain contact with their insurer and provide documentation involving the worker’s medical treatment. They may also be asked to provide updates on the worker’s condition or report how many days of work were missed.

Check in with the employee.
In addition to communicating with their insurer, the employer should let the worker know when they can expect to begin receiving benefits. The employer may also schedule regular check-ins.

Make a timeline for a return to work.
The employer and employee will work together to create a rough timeline for their return. It is important to discuss any necessary accommodations or changes to job duties.

Implement return to work procedures.
The employer should have a return to work program already in place to ensure a smooth transition.

If your return to work has not gone according to plan, contact a Workers’ Comp lawyer today. Unfair treatment or disregard for physician-directed restrictions should not be tolerated – and Hoffman Law Firm can help. Our team will advocate on your behalf, ensuring your rights are defended at all costs.

Understanding Employer’s Duty Not To Retaliate

Employees are protected from discrimination, harassment, or unfair job termination under the law. If they were hurt at work, filing a Workers’ Comp claim is their right. To protect this right, a worker may file a legal claim against their employer for “retaliatory discharge.” While firing the worker is the most extreme form of retaliation, some employers engage in more subtle types of discrimination like pay cuts or demotion.

(843) 769-7077 Contact Us Today!

Trusted workers' comp lawyers to address your employer and their insurance company. Schedule your initial free consultation today!

Workers’ Compensation Claim vs Workers’ Compensation Lawsuit

A Workers’ Compensation claim is filed with the employer’s insurance carrier. If the claim is denied or the insurer refuses to offer fair compensation, a personal injury lawsuit may be filed. An experienced Workers’ Comp lawyer can handle the process from start to finish, first attempting to negotiate with the insurance company. If mediation is unsuccessful and a settlement agreement cannot be reached, a trial will follow. While many personal injury lawsuits settle outside of court, your Workers’ Comp lawyer is prepared to take your case to trial.

Can I Hire Hoffman Law Firm to Review My Workers' Comp Claim?

To file a workers' compensation claim, you simply need to inform your employer, but if you are suspicious, you can hire an experienced workers' comp lawyer to review your case.

Hoffman Law Firm has years of experience helping workplace accident victims throughout the Palmetto State. It helps to have a local lawyer support a local for their accident case. We offer the comfort needed to manage the stress that comes with any accident injury. Trust us, we will address your employer, their insurance company, and manage your workers' comp claim from top to bottom.

Plus, you only pay us if we win your claim. So, reach Hoffman Law Firm today for a free case review!

What Our Workers Comp Clients Say About Us

Five Star Rating
I loved working with the staff at Hoffman Law Firm, and I loved that they were willing to take on our case even though it was a small claims case and still provided us with respectful and professional services. They really guide you through every step of the process and make sure you understand what your options are in order to get the best results.

Five Star Rating
Very thorough with the case and responsive within having to switch paralegals. Want to thank y’all again for all your help and wish y’all the best of luck in the future with your personal lives and the clients as well.

Five Star Rating
I absolutely love the Hoffman Law Firm. I always was able to reach them when I needed them and they always returned my calls and emails quickly. Definitely will send everyone to them.

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Trusted workers' comp lawyers to address your employer and their insurance company. Schedule your initial free consultation today!

Charleston Workers' Compensation Frequently Asked Questions

Workers' compensation refers to the benefits accessible to employees who suffer on the job injuries or work place illnesses. The majority of employers are legally required to provide these benefits.

Workers’ compensation insurance safeguards both employees and employers from monetary loss in the event of a work related injury or illness in Charleston. You may also hear workers’ compensation called workman’s compensation, workers’ comp and workmans’ comp – but each term refers to the same system of benefits.

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Do not assume that your employer’s insurance company has your best interests in mind. They may try to offer less than you are entitled to after your work related injury – which is why it is crucial to have an experienced Charleston workers’ compensation attorney on your side.

Our team will fight to maximize your recovery, ensuring you are not taken advantage of. Hoffman Law Firm’s attorneys know SC law inside and out, and we are here to help you get the compensation you deserve. If you have suffered a work related injury in Charleston, schedule your free consultation today to get started.

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If you have a legitimate legal claim against a liable third party, you may be able to pursue compensation for your work related injury. But getting the money you are entitled to can be complicated.

Our Charleston law firm has successfully handled a wide variety of work related injury cases, equipping our team of workers’ compensation attorneys to fully assist you – no matter your circumstances.

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If you suffered an on the job injury, you are eligible for the following benefits under South Carolina Workers’ Compensation law:

  • Medical costs: Payment for necessary treatment, medication, surgery, physical therapy, etc
  • Lost wages: Income while you cannot work or as long as restricted duty is not being provided
  • Long-term disability: Ongoing medical assistance or payment in the case of serious injury

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Because work related injuries are very diverse, you must only prove that your accident occurred at work and that it caused your injury. This is often easier said than done, especially if your employer denies your personal injury claim. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced Workers’ Comp attorney on your side.

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The most common injuries result from:

  • Lifting
  • Repetitive motion
  • Overexertion
  • Falls, slips or trips
  • Motor vehicle/transportation accidents
  • Contact with falling objects
  • Explosions and fires

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Although you have 90 days to report your work place accident to your employer, it’s best to inform them immediately. Waiting could jeopardize your accident claim or delay your benefits. Injured workers have up to 2 years to officially file a Workers’ Compensation claim, but again, it’s best to file as soon as possible. Hoffman Law Firm will handle the entire process from start to finish, allowing you to focus on your recovery.

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No. The South Carolina law protects employees from any form of retaliation, including termination of employment. This means that your employer cannot fire you solely because you filed an accident claim for your on the job injury.

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Yes. As long as your accident occurred at work, you are eligible for benefits – regardless of fault. Exceptions include irresponsible or reckless behavior such as drug or alcohol use, horseplay, etc.

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South Carolina Workers’ Comp law dictates that you must see the doctor chosen by your employer. If you seek treatment from your own doctor instead, you will likely not receive compensation for your medical costs. If you would like a second opinion, you can request an alternative doctor from your insurance carrier but there is no right to a second opinion in South Carolina. Hoffman Law Firm can help ensure you receive the quality care you deserve, handling all communication with the insurance company.

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There is a specific formula used to determine the amount of money you will receive each week. Simply put, it amounts to 2/3 of your weekly wage, averaged over the last four quarters. However, there is a maximum that may cause high earners’ wages to be adjusted.

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In cases of severe injury, you may be eligible for partial or total disability. Please read the descriptions below to learn more about each.

Temporary partial disability: In this case, you are able to work but will earn less due to your injury. Benefits include 2/3 of the difference between your wages before and after the injury, and are paid for a maximum of 340 weeks.

Permanent partial disability: Compensation is typically based on the injury’s severity and its effect on your job performance. Each body part has a “max value” and benefits will be paid up to 340 weeks.

Temporary total disability: Benefits in this case are 2/3 of your average weekly wage, capped at a certain maximum value. Benefits are paid until you reach max medical improvement or until you are able to do your job normally.

Permanent total disability: This is the result of a very serious injury, such as the loss of both legs. In most cases, benefits are paid for up to 500 weeks, based on your average weekly wage. But there are exceptions for accident victims who sustain brain damage or are left as paraplegics or quadriplegics. In these instances, benefits last for life.

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Your employer may deny that your accident occurred at work or question the severity of your injury. While a denied accident claim is frustrating, it does not mean that the case is closed. Filing an appeal is the next step, but considering the intricacies of South Carolina Workers’ Comp laws, it’s best to have an experienced attorney handle the appeals process.

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While you can file a legal claim yourself, it is not advised. Even seemingly straightforward cases can quickly become complicated, and if you don’t have a thorough understanding of the Workers’ Comp laws in question, your benefits – and your family’s future – are at risk. If you’ve been hurt at work, it’s best to contact Hoffman Law Firm immediately. Our team has extensive experience handling cases like yours, and getting injured workers the benefits they deserve..

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You may be able to collect unemployment after a Workers’ Comp settlement, depending on the circumstances surrounding your on the job injury. In many cases, injured workers sign a resignation letter as part of their settlement deal. If you do this, you may not be able to collect unemployment. Keep in mind that if you are collecting unemployment benefits during the settlement process, the value of your Workers’ Compensation case will decrease to reflect this. Consult your Workers’ Comp attorney for details about your specific case.

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Your Workers’ Comp claim will remain open for two years. While you must report your on the job injury within 90 days, you have up to two years to officially file a legal claim. If the on the job injury results in death, the worker’s dependents (or parents if there are no dependents) must file the claim within two years of their death.

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Your employer’s insurance carrier is responsible for payment if your work place injury keeps you out of work for more than seven days. All employers with four or more employees are required by law to carry Workers’ Comp insurance.

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Yes, Workers’ Compensation benefits include medical travel expenses if the round trip distance is more than ten miles from your home. As of August 2004, the Workers’ Comp Commission approved reimbursement for travel to the pharmacy as well – as long as the round trip distance exceeds ten miles. You will receive reimbursement for mileage at the rate allowed state employees.

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If light work is ordered, you must accept it. Refusal to return to light work may result in the discontinuation of all compensation. You do, however, have the right to a hearing if you believe that you are not capable of safely completing the work your employer has assigned.

If you return to light work before your doctor fully discharges you at a lower wage than you earned before your injury, you are still entitled to Workers’ Comp benefits. You will receive weekly compensation at a rate of ⅔ the difference between your average weekly wage and your new wage.

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If you have been hurt at work, you are entitled to compensation at a rate of ⅔ of your average weekly wage – based on the four quarters prior to your work place injury. This amount cannot exceed the maximum average weekly wage determined annually by the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce. Note: if you have two or more jobs when your accident takes place, these wages may be included in the average weekly wage calculation. It is best to have an experienced Workers’ Comp attorney on your side to ensure you receive the full benefits you are entitled to.

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If you are out of work for more than seven days, you are entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits. The payments will come directly to you from your employer’s insurance carrier after the seven day waiting period. If you are out of work for more than 14 days, you will receive compensation for the first seven days. Payments will continue until your doctor authorizes your return to work.

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After your doctor releases you to return to work (with or without physical restrictions), you should receive two copies of Form 15 within 150 days. Section II will be completed, confirming that compensation has stopped – and including the reasons why. If you disagree with the reasons listed, complete Section III of the form and send it to the Commission’s Judicial Department. This is your request for a hearing to be held in 60 days.

If your doctor authorizes your return to work after the 150-day notification period has ended, your employer or their insurance representation will request that you sign Form 17. This form serves as a receipt of compensation and should be completed after you have been back on the job for 15 days.

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No. To receive unemployment, you must be able and available to work. Workers’ Compensation, on the other hand, is for people who cannot work due to illness or injury. Both criteria cannot be satisfied at the same time, meaning that you cannot be eligible for both at the same time. Trying to cheat the system and collect both benefits is considered fraud – and may result in criminal and/or civil charges.

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In most cases, you cannot sue your employer if you have accepted Workers’ Comp benefits. But because no two cases are exactly alike, we recommend speaking to a qualified Workers’ Compensation attorney.

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No, all Workers’ Comp benefits are tax exempt. You do not have to pay state or federal income taxes on your Workers’ Comp benefits.

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If you report your work place accident right away and your employer accepts your legal claim, you should begin receiving benefits almost immediately. Remember that you must report your injury to your employer within 90 days of the accident.

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