Important Information for Potential Clients
Workers' Compensation in Maine
- Anything you say to your employer or the insurer can and will be used against your claim.
- Get the most experienced lawyer you can find, as soon as he or she will take your case.
- Find out whether the insurer is paying you benefits at the correct rate. Many cases are deliberately underpaid.
- If you have been receiving workers' compensation for more than three months, there is a good chance of surveillance.
- Never refuse to return to any job unless your doctor has first told you in writing not to, or unless your attorney has told you not to. You risk losing all future wage loss compensation by refusing to perform a suitable job.
- Keep the insurer informed of all changes in your medical treatment and seek its approval, if possible, before incurring significant new expenses.
- ALWAYS permit the insurer's doctor to examine you when this is requested, but maintain treatment with the doctor of your own choice. Before refusing to undergo an insurance medical exam, speak to an experienced workers' compensation lawyer.
- NEVER EARN INCOME AFTER THE INJURY WITHOUT IMMEDIATELY REPORTING IT TO THE INSURER. Failure to report income will not only forfeit your right to workers' compensation, but may be a criminal offense.
- NEVER LIE TO THE EMPLOYER, THE INSURER, YOUR LAWYER OR THE WORKERS' COMPENSATION BOARD ABOUT ANY DETAIL OF YOUR CASE OR CLAIM.
- Return to work as soon as possible after your injury; a good job is always better than a good case.
- Immediately report all changes in address or telephone number to the insurer and your lawyer.
- Keep accurate and complete records of your work search efforts; these records are often the only important documents you will need to provide for your case (medical records are available from other sources).
- If the insurer has stopped your benefits or is threatening to stop them, see an experienced workers' compensation lawyer before discussing settlement with the insurer.
- If the insurer tells you that your benefits will run out after so many years, DO NOT accept this information blindly. Seek the opinion of an experienced workers' compensation lawyer.
- NEVER TRY TO SETTLE your case without the advice of an experienced workers' compensation lawyer.
Personal Injury Law in Maine
- Never assume you have no case; if you have suffered a serious injury, see an experienced personal injury lawyer for his opinion on your rights.
- AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AFTER YOUR INJURY, consult the most experienced, most trustworthy and most effective lawyer you can locate. DELAY in seeing a lawyer is the biggest avoidable reason that good cases are sometimes lost.
- Many lawyers are relatively inexperienced in handling injury cases and may give poor advice regarding major, unusual or complex cases. If you are not confident of the ability of the lawyer(s) you have already spoken to, call another one.
- PRESERVE ALL EVIDENCE AFTER AN ACCIDENT: (1) Photograph the scene and damages, including injuries, property damage, etc. on the same day if possible, using a good camera; if not, on the next day (2) Record the names and addresses of witnesses; (3) Keep good records of all lost earnings, out-of-pocket expenses and prescriptions filled; (4) Keep a regular diary of your problems caused by the accident
- DO NOT GIVE ANY RECORDED OR WRITTEN STATEMENTS TO THE INSURER OR THE DEFENDANT BEFORE CONSULTING A LAWYER. However, after a car accident involving personal injury, an accident report must be filed with 48 hours. Do not provide further information without legal advice.
- Get medical attention as soon as possible if you have been injured. If you have not been seen by a doctor, the world will assume you were not injured.
- ALWAYS LISTEN TO AND FOLLOW YOUR LAWYER'S ADVICE ABOUT SETTLEMENT; THAT'S THE REASON YOU HIRED HIM!!