On-the-job injuries can happen in virtually any line of work – and the consequences can be very serious. While some injuries may be completely treatable, others can keep you out of work for weeks or months -- and prevent you from ever resuming your job. A workplace injury can put your financial future in jeopardy, so it’s vital that you understand your rights if you are hurt.

In Nebraska, you may be eligible for workers' compensation if you suffered an injury in the course of performing your job – and this can be an immediate injury or an occupational disease. If you need advice about your workplace injury claim, the attorneys at Dyer Law can help by reviewing your case and discussing all available legal options. Call Dyer Law toll free at 1-888-393-7529 or contact us via email. We're ready to help with a free initial consultation. We handle claims anywhere in Nebraska, including Omaha, Lincoln, Bellevue, Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings, North Platte, Norfolk, Columbus, Scottsbluff, Ogallala and Offutt Air Force Base.

Understanding Workers’ Compensation

Depending on your injury, you may be entitled to benefits including:

  • Payment of medical and hospital bills.
  • Payment of your mileage incurred for medical appointments.
  • Payment of weekly income while you are out of work.
  • Payment for temporary and permanent disability.
  • Vocational rehabilitation (consisting of job placement, training or education).

Workers' compensation pays for your damages without a showing of fault. If your injury is attributable to a third party – such as the manufacturer of faulty equipment you used on your job or a negligent driver who crashes into you while you are working – you may be able to bring a claim against that party. This right is important because unlike a workers' compensation claim, in a third-party personal injury claim you can recover damages for pain and suffering.

Many people do not realize they can file claims for workers' compensation and against a third party. If your injury was caused by third party negligence, this option can be extremely helpful in securing the best possible compensation for your injuries in a timely manner. Third party claims, just like other lawsuits, can take months to resolve – and meanwhile, you have medical bills and treatment needs. Workers' compensation can actually provide you with benefits sooner, even though the damages may be more limited than those involved in a third-party claim. Your workers' compensation insurance carrier does have the right to seek reimbursement for a percentage of the compensation paid to you if you win your claim against a third party. However, this payment will be paid from the third-party’s insurance company to your workers' compensation carrier, so you will not be asked to pay back workers' compensation from your own pocket.

Work with an Experienced Workers’ Compensation Attorney

Workplace injury cases can be complicated – proving third-party negligence often requires expert testimony from qualified witnesses knowledgeable in specific technology or engineering. Third parties may attempt to shift blame onto your employer – or even onto you. And the paper trail of documentation needed to establish your medical status and treatment can be frustrating. But if you’ve suffered serious injury at work, you are entitled to compensation – and an experienced workplace injury attorney can help navigate the complex laws and procedures to ensure a successful outcome for your case.

The attorneys at Dyer Law understand how to handle workplace injury cases. We’ve represented clients throughout Nebraska – and we’re ready to help you. Dyer Law offers prospective clients an initial case evaluation for FREE in person or over the phone. Contact us seven days a week by calling 1-888-393-7529 or via email.

FAQs About Workers’ Compensation

    What Losses Can You Be Compensated for?

A compensable workers’ compensation claim is when personal injury is caused to an employee by accident or occupational disease arising out of and in the course of employment. In the State of Nebraska, if you have been injured on the job, even if you were negligent, you may be entitled to benefits.

Depending on your particular injury, you may be entitled to not only have your medical and hospital bills paid, but you may be paid a weekly income for the time you missed from work. You might also be compensated for your temporary, permanent or partial disability or if you can no longer perform the work you had been trained to do. This would apply to you if you were hired in Nebraska or, at the time you were injured, you were performing work in Nebraska or your employer was principally located here.

Remember that insurance companies have professional adjusters and attorneys working to represent their interests and to save the insurance company money. Make sure that you are not dealing with the insurance company at an unfair advantage. It is your right to be equally represented.

    Which Doctors Can Treat You?

In Nebraska, if you are injured at work, you can choose your own doctor if that doctor has treated you or an immediate family member in the past, if the doctor you need is to perform major surgery on you, or in certain cases, when the employer denies the claim or does not accept compensability.

In other cases, your employer can choose the doctor for you. Your employer must give you notice of your right to choose your doctor. In the event that you would like to change doctors, then you and your employer must agree on the new doctor; and if you cannot agree, the Court will decide for you. There are some exceptions to this when your employer is a member of a certified managed care program.

Dyer Law office is experienced in this aspect of the law and will clarify any questions you may have. Remember that insurance companies have professional adjusters and attorneys working to represent their interests and to save the insurance company money. Make sure that you are not dealing with the insurance company at an unfair advantage. It is your right to be equally represented.

    When Can You Pursue a Claim Against Your Employer?

In Nebraska, if you are injured at work due to the negligence of someone you work with or your employer, then you can proceed with a claim against your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance.

Ordinarily you are limited to the damages that the Workers’ Compensation Act provides. Depending on your particular injury, you may be entitled to not only have your medical and hospital bills paid, but you may be paid a weekly income for the time you missed from work.

Dyer Law office has recovered compensation for temporary and permanent disability; and in some cases, if the type of work you did can no longer be performed, then you may be eligible to be retrained. Remember that insurance companies have professional adjusters and attorneys working to represent their interests and to save the insurance company money. Make sure that you are not dealing with the insurance company at an unfair advantage. It is your right to be equally represented.

    When to Report Your Injuries?

You should report your injuries to your employer as soon as possible and complete the workers' compensation form entitled “First Report of Alleged Occupational Injury or Illness”.

Remember that insurance companies have professional adjusters and attorneys working to represent their interests and to save the insurance company money. Make sure that you are not dealing with the insurance company at an unfair advantage. It is your right to be equally represented.

    How Long After an Injury Can You Pursue Your Claim?

In most cases in Nebraska, you have two years from the date of your injury or the Workers’ Compensation insurance company makes its last payment to begin a court proceeding in the Workers’ Compensation Court. This time limit may be extended if your employer has paid any of the bills associated with your injury. For a specific analysis on the time you have to file your claim, it is important to contact an attorney immediately.

If you have been injured on the job, even if you were negligent, you may be entitled to benefits.

Remember that insurance companies have professional adjusters and attorneys working to represent their interests and to save the insurance company money. Make sure that you are not dealing with the insurance company at an unfair advantage. It is your right to be equally represented.

    Injured by a Third Party Not Your Employer or Co-Worker?

In Nebraska, if you are injured at work due to a third party, or the negligence of someone who is not your employer or co-worker, you can proceed with a claim against that party for damages. Unlike a workers’ compensation claim, you may be entitled to recover damages for pain and suffering.

Additionally, you may be able to proceed with a claim against both your employer's insurance and the negligent third party.

Remember that insurance companies have professional adjusters and attorneys working to represent their interests and to save the insurance company money. Make sure that you are not dealing with the insurance company at an unfair advantage.

    Police Officer LOD

Being injured by a drunk driver, a negligent driver or in any other manner while in the line of duty, is not "part of the job."  Police officers hold a uniquely dangerous job – and the likelihood of accidents and injuries is extremely high in their line of work. Yet many police officers aren’t aware of their rights when an accident on the job causes serious injury.

Police officers have the same rights as every other citizen in Nebraska. Although being injured in the line of duty is a risk associated with police work, police officers are not volunteers or Good Samaritans. You have the right to be paid for the hours you work and to be paid extra for overtime. The law also provides that if you are injured, you are entitled to workers' compensation benefits. The law further provides that in the event you are hurt due to a drunk or negligent driver you are entitled to be compensated for the past and future pain that workers' compensation doesn’t cover. That money can be recovered from the person who hurt you, his or her insurance company, or both.

You don’t need the burden of worrying about how you will pay for necessary medical treatment – or how your family will survive if you can no longer work. As a Police Officer, you have the right to be compensated.

As an officer of the law, you defend the rights of the public every day – let us defend your rights to fair compensation for your injuries. Call Dyer Law toll free at 1-888-393-7529 or contact us via email. We're ready to help with a free initial consultation. We handle claims anywhere in Nebraska, including Omaha, Lincoln, Bellevue, Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings, North Platte, Norfolk, Columbus, Scottsbluff, Ogallala and Offutt Air Force Base.

Mike Dyer of Dyer Law understands the challenges police officers face – because he used to be one. A native of Long Island, Mr. Dyer worked for four years as a New York City police officer before a work-related injury prompted his early retirement from the police force. After relocating to Omaha, Nebraska in 1987, he studied law and established his practice to help victims of vehicle and work-related accidents. His experience and dedication give him a unique perspective on police officer accidents – enabling him to advocate tirelessly on behalf of officers injured in the line of duty.

While many officers understand the principle of workers' compensation, not everyone knows what is or isn’t covered – or what other legal options are available when a third party is responsible for the injury.

If an officer is hurt while performing his or her job, that injury is covered by workers' compensation.  Virtually any injury suffered on the job is covered. In order to receive Worker’s Compensation, however, you must follow certain steps to properly file a claim.

Report the injury to your superior as soon as you possibly can – otherwise, any subsequent claims may be denied.

Seek medical treatment right away – if you wait to see a doctor, thinking your injury might get better on its own, you’re actually hurting your rights to future claims. Workers' compensation claims require concrete documentation of your injury, and the best proof is medical documentation provided by a doctor’s report of treatment.

Know which doctor you can see – many workers' compensation plans have rules dictating specific doctors you can see for work-related injuries. Police officers are not typically bound by the same obligations and can see a doctor of their own choosing. However, if you participate in a managed care plan, you may have to seek treatment from a doctor within that program.  Make sure that the doctor you see is one you feel comfortable with for future treatment, as changing physicians is difficult in the midst of a workers' compensation claim.

Once your doctor has determined that you have recovered as much as possible, the doctor will assess whether you have suffered any degree of impairment, entitling you to additional benefits. If your injury has caused permanent damage to your ability to perform your job, a review known as a Loss of Earnings Evaluation may be done – and you may be assigned a vocational rehabilitation specialist to help find you new employment.

If your injury was caused by a drunk or otherwise negligent driver, a perpetrator attempting to resist arrest, or any other negligent individual with whom you interacted as part of your job, you may have additional legal options. You may be able to file a claim against the insurance company for the individual responsible for your injuries. In fact, you may be able to file both a workers' compensation claim and a claim against the third party’s insurance company.

Some police officers are reluctant to file both types of claims because they don’t want to add financial burden to their own workers' compensation carrier. However, the workers' compensation insurance carrier has a right to be paid back – by the insurance company of the person who caused you harm. So when you file both types of claims, you receive the immediate benefits necessary to pay for medical treatment via workers' compensation, and the third-party claim benefits will pay back workers' compensation and provide you with benefits you may need down the road.

If your injury was caused by a car accident with an underinsured or uninsured driver, you may also be able to file a claim with your own insurance company if you opted to keep underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage on your own vehicle’s policy.

Mike Dyer and the other lawyers at Dyer Law have extensive experience handling police officer accident cases. We’ve represented injury victims throughout Nebraska, including Douglas, Sarpy, Cass, Buffalo, Hall, Lincoln and Lancaster Counties – and we’re ready to help you. Dyer Law offers prospective clients an initial case evaluation for FREE in person or over the phone. Contact us seven days a week by calling 1-888-393-7529 or via email.