Understanding Workers’ Compensation Knee Injury Settlement Amounts in North Carolina

September 7, 2023 1:43 am

Understanding Workers’ Compensation Knee Injury Settlement Amounts in North Carolina

By: Perry Morrison

Understanding Workers' Compensation Knee Injury Settlement Amounts in North Carolina

Knee injuries are unfortunately prevalent in the workplace, affecting a broad spectrum of employees spanning various industries. Grasping the nuances of workers’ compensation in the context of knee injuries holds significant importance for both employers and employees. This article provides comprehensive insights into knee injuries occurring in work settings. The array of workers’ compensation benefits tailored for such incidents, the variables that influence settlement figures, and pragmatic guidance for traversing the claims procedure adeptly.

Average Workers Compensation Knee Injury Settlement Amounts

The National Safety Council provides a valuable reference point, indicating that the average cost of to Workers’ Compensation insurance carriers for a knee injury stands at $34,932. This encompasses $18,293 designated for medical expenses and an additional $16,639 allocated towards sundry forms of compensation. However, it’s crucial to remember that these figures serve as approximations and can substantially fluctuate contingent upon diverse factors.  The evaluation for settlement value will begin with that amount of your average weekly wage. Other relevant factors encompass the gravity of the injury, specific regulations applicable in different states, and the peculiarities of individual cases. Consequently, settlement amounts may surge higher or dwindle lower contingent upon the unique circumstances of each case.

In pursuing a workers’ compensation claim for a knee injury, individuals should seek counsel from seasoned workers’ compensation attorneys. These legal experts can proficiently evaluate the distinctive aspects of their situation, confer understanding regarding potential benefits and compensation, and adeptly guide them through the labyrinthine claims process. An attorney plays a pivotal role in ensuring injured workers secure equitable and just compensation for their injuries.

Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Knee Injuries

Workers’ compensation benefits are designed to facilitate the recovery process, provide essential medical care, and offset the financial setbacks caused by the injury. Although the precise benefits on offer can exhibit variation based on your state of employment, we’ll explore the common types of workers’ compensation benefits tailored for knee injuries:

1. Medical Expenses Coverage: Workers’ compensation comprehensively covers all reasonable and indispensable medical expenses linked to the diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of knee injuries. 

2. Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits: For employees temporarily rendered unable to work due to a knee injury, TTD benefits come to the rescue. These benefits aim to bridge the gap in lost wages during the recovery period. Typically, the amount of TTD benefits corresponds to 66.67% of the injured worker’s average weekly wage.

3. Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) Benefits: TPD benefits cater to workers who can engage in some form of work but cannot earn their pre-injury wages due to work-related limitations. These benefits provide partial wage replacement, serving as a buffer for the disparity in earnings.

4. Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) Benefits: In cases where the knee injury results in lasting impairment but doesn’t prohibit the worker from resuming employment, PPD benefits may be conferred. The degree of impairment is assessed by a medical professional and assigned a rating, which subsequently determines the compensation level.

5. Permanent Total Disability (PTD) Benefits: For scenarios where the knee injury leads to permanent and total disability, rendering the worker incapable of any gainful employment, PTD benefits become a lifeline. These benefits extend long-term financial support, but not for more than 500 weeks in most cases.

6. Vocational Rehabilitation: When an injured worker confronts the reality of not being able to return to their previous job due to their knee injury, vocational rehabilitation services may come into play. These services encompass job retraining, educational pursuits, and assistance securing new employment, effectively facilitating the transition to a different occupation.

7. Travel Expenses: Workers’ compensation can also cover reasonable travel expenses in seeking medical treatment for the knee injury. This includes compensation for mileage or transportation costs to attend crucial medical appointments or engage in vital physical therapy sessions.

8. Death Benefits (if applicable): In the unfortunate event that a work-related knee injury culminates in the loss of an employee’s life, their dependents may qualify for death benefits. These encompass financial support to cover funeral expenses and provide ongoing financial assistance to surviving family members.

It’s imperative to acknowledge that workers’ compensation regulations and benefits can exhibit significant variances from North Carolina to other states. The eligibility criteria and the intricacies of calculation methods may also differ. For injured workers to comprehensively understand and access these benefits, consulting their specific state’s workers’ compensation regulations or seeking legal counsel is paramount. Furthermore, the expeditious reporting of the injury to the employer and strict adherence to the prescribed claims process stand as pivotal steps in securing workers’ compensation benefits for knee injuries.

How to properly file a Workers' Compensation Claim in North Carolina

How to properly file a Workers’ Compensation Claim in North Carolina

Filing a workers’ compensation claim in North Carolina is vital to securing the entitled benefits following a work-related injury. To navigate this process effectively and ensure you receive the support you need, follow these meticulously outlined steps:

1. Prioritize Immediate Medical Attention:

First and foremost, your health and safety should be paramount. If you sustain a workplace injury, promptly seek medical care. Ensure to inform the healthcare provider that your injury results from your work duties.

2. Notify Your Employer About the Injury:

It is imperative to promptly inform your employer about the injury. North Carolina mandates that you report the injury within 30 days of its occurrence. 

3. Document the Incident:

To fortify your case, meticulously document the details surrounding the incident. Record pertinent information such as the date, time, location, witnesses, and other relevant particulars. This documentation can prove invaluable as your claim progresses.

4. Acquire the Requisite Forms:

Your employer should supply you with the necessary workers’ compensation forms. These typically include a Form 18 (Notice of Accident to Employer) and a Form 19 (Claim for Compensation).

5. Complete Form 18 Accurately:

Fill out Form 18 with precision and thoroughness. 

6. Submit Form 18 to the NC Industrial Commission:

It is very important to seek an attorney’s counsel in filing the Form 18, as your description of the injury MUST SHOW that is was an ACCIDENT, and not just a sudden traumatic incident.  After completing Form 18, submit it to the North Carolina Industrial Commission either by U.S. Mail or via their portal.

7. Await Your Employer’s Response:

Your employer has a short window to report your injury to their workers’ compensation insurance provider. Subsequently, the insurance carrier will either accept or deny your claim.  DO NOT ALLOW THE INSURANCE CARRIER TO RECORD YOUR TELEPHONE STATEMENT WITHOUT SEEKING THE ADVICE OF AN ATTORNEY.

8. If Your Claim Is Accepted:

In the event of an accepted claim, you will receive essential medical treatment. You may be eligible for temporary disability benefits should your injury prevent you from working during your recovery period.

9. If Your Claim Is Denied:

Should your claim be denied, you possess the right to appeal. It is advisable to consult with a seasoned workers’ compensation attorney who can adeptly guide you through the appeals process.

10. Maintain Meticulous Records:

Throughout the claims process, diligently maintain comprehensive records of all medical treatments, expenses, correspondence, and communications with your employer, the insurance carrier, and other relevant parties.

11. Consult with Legal Counsel:

Contemplating legal counsel is prudent, particularly if your claim is denied or if you encounter complexities during the process. An attorney can provide invaluable guidance, safeguarding your rights and interests.  DO NOT ALLOW THE INSURANCE CARRIER TO RECORD YOUR TELEPHONE STATEMENT WITHOUT SPEAKING FIRST WITH AN ATTORNEY!

12. Attend All Medical Appointments:

Attend each scheduled medical appointment and adhere to your doctor’s treatment and rehabilitation recommendations. 

13. Maintain Communication with Your Attorney:

Should you have legal representation, maintain open lines of communication with your attorney, keeping them informed of any developments pertinent to your claim.

14. Exercise Patience:

Understand that the workers’ compensation process can be protracted. Patience and persistence are pivotal virtues as you pursue the benefits you rightfully deserve.

Remember, the specific procedures and requisites for filing a workers’ compensation claim may exhibit variances, so it is prudent to consult the North Carolina Industrial Commission or seek legal counsel for the most current and precise information tailored to your unique circumstances.

Understanding Knee Injuries in the Workplace

Knee injuries are widespread across various industries, potentially causing significant repercussions for affected workers. Here’s a concise overview:

Common Causes of Knee Injuries

  1. Slips and Falls: Hazardous conditions like wet floors or debris can lead to knee injuries.
  2. Trips: Workplace hazards can result in tripping and subsequent knee injuries.
  3. Repetitive Motions: Frequent kneeling, squatting, or bending can cause overuse injuries.
  4. Lifting and Carrying: Improper lifting practices and heavy loads can strain the knees.
  5. Falls from Heights: Working at heights, such as in construction, poses risks of knee injuries during falls.
  6. Vehicle Accidents: Workers in transportation roles face knee injury risks in accidents.
  7. Machine Accidents: Operators of heavy machinery are vulnerable to knee injuries in machinery malfunctions.

Types of Knee Injuries

  1. Sprains and Strains: Overstretching or tearing of ligaments (sprains), muscles, and tendons (strains) around the knee joint.
  2. Fractures and Dislocations: Broken bones or joint dislocations.
  3. Torn Ligaments: Injuries to ligaments like the ACL, MCL, and PCL due to twisting or direct impact.
  4. Meniscus Tears: Tears in the knee’s cartilage from sudden twisting or repetitive stress.

Effect of Knee Injuries on Workers

  1. Pain and Mobility Issues: Knee injuries often cause pain, swelling, and reduced mobility, hindering job performance and daily activities.
  2. Lost Wages: Injured workers may be unable to work during recovery, resulting in financial strain.
  3. Medical Treatment and Rehabilitation: Knee injuries necessitate medical care, including surgery, physical therapy, and ongoing rehabilitation to restore function.
North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Knee Injury Claims

North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Knee Injury Claims

If you’re navigating a workers’ compensation claim for a knee injury in North Carolina, our dedicated team of lawyers at Morrison Law Firm P.L.L.C. is ready to guide you through every step. For a free consultation, email us at pmorrison@nccomplaw.com or call on 252-243-1003. Visit our website PerryKnows.com. 

Servicing The Following Counties In North Carolina