Work Comp: When to walk away from a $100,000.00 offer

We recently received a settlement offer of $100,000.00 to resolve a spinal injury workers’ compensation claim.  We strongly recommended our client reject it.  We know that that at trial we will do no worse than $100,000.00.  Sure, trials are difficult and often times uncertain, but not in this case.  The company has accepted that my client was injured.  We were able to get all his bills paid by work comp and they paid my client while he was off work.  They even brought him back to work.  But, here’s the problem…we warned our client that the company probably wouldn’t be able to provide him work much longer; also we were worried that he wouldn’t be able to do the job long-term.  As it turned out, we were right on both counts…my client’s back has worsened such that his doctor put permanent restrictions on him…and the company is laying him off as part of a general lay-off.  What does this mean to his case?  A lot.

 Because my client has been terminated he will have to try to find work elsewhere.  The problem is that he has severe restrictions and he doesn’t have much experience in any other type of work (what we call “transferable skills”).  As a result it is almost a certainty that he will have to take a much lower paying job.  This would entitle him to a “wage differential” award if we can prove our case at court.  That makes his case worth (in our estimation) $200,000.00-$250,000.00.  We will still have to have the client work with a vocational expert and we will still have to help him find a new job.  But, a few more months of patience and a lot more hard work will greatly increase his chances of getting twice as much than is on the table.  This will give him, his wife and kids a much better chance of a stable life by making up the lost income which he will have due to his injuries.

 Sometimes you have to fight to get what you deserve.  We’re ready to fight for you.  Call the Law Office of Keith Short, 618-655-9499 or 618-254-0055.


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