Call (757) 316-8888 for a Free Workers’ Compensation Consultation.
Franklin & Franklin handles workers’ compensation and job accident and injury cases before the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission. We work to get you the maximum benefits allowed under the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Act.
Benefits may include lost wages and income, indemnity benefits, medical treatment, vocational assistance and job placement. We also file permanent disability benefits claim that can include pain and suffering leading to a loss of use. We review your wages to make sure you’re being paid what is required under the law. We can help you choose the best medical providers from a workers’ compensation panel and help guide you through the difficulties associated with your return to work experience.
What does it cost to hire an attorney?
Fees are awarded to worker’s attorneys by the Commission and are generally based on a percentage of the money an injured worker receives from the action before the Commission. In this way they are similar to contingent fees attorneys usually charge in personal injury cases. Here is a breakdown of possible costs in your claim:
1) Expenses – There are expenses we incur in order to represent you and to build your case. The most common charges are for medical records that we request, copying fees and and postage. Higher cost items may include conferences with your doctors, deposition fees and expert report fees. As times have changed, we try to limit all of these expenses by requesting as much as possible electronically. Regardless of the outcome of the case, these expenses are the client’s responsibility. This is not an attorney fee.
2) Going to court – When there is an issue or a claim that needs go to a hearing, the Commission will set the fee for the lawyer’s court appearance. Normally, it is 20% of the claimed back wage benefits (if that is being sought) and is paid in a lump sum to us out of your lump sum back wages check. Sometimes when there is no money being awarded to the client, we may ask that you sign a fee agreement that represents the time our attorneys will expend to prosecute your claim. We may also request that you pay a retainer to cover the fees and costs associated with pursuing a claim at the Commission. This fee agreement would be subject to approval by the Commission.
3) Award – If we get an Award entered to protect your benefits, the Commission may set an attorney fee for this. Typically, the range for these fees are based on the amount of back wages paid, or they may enter a fee for this which could be between $200 -$500.
4) Settlements – If we are able to resolve a case for a client in the form of a final or partial settlement, our fee is calculated on 20% of the gross settlement amount, plus reimbursement of any expenses.
5) Award for Permanent Impairment Rating – The Commission will award a fee of 15% of the awarded permanent partial If my office assists an injured worker to obtain an Award for an impairment rating, the Commission will award an attorney fee of 15% of the Award.
Potentially, we could get paid all of these ways or not at all. We would not get paid at all if we were attempting to settle your workers’ compensation claim and the insurance company refused to settle for a fair price. There are many different situations and I know this can be confusing, so if you have any questions about this, please feel free to contact my staff and they can help you to better understand these fees and which ones may or may not apply to you.
Contact Franklin & Franklin at (757) 316-8888 for a free consultation regarding your workers’ compensation claim. Many times we recommend to clients that they handle their cases on their own as the claim may not require paying us an unnecessary fee.