LEARNING TO LISTEN “RIGHT”
Part of the work that we do on Heiting & Irwin’s Workers’ Compensation team includes helping the injured worker understand the steps involved in the process of the ever-changing Workers’ Compensation system. As I pass my 21st year working as a Worker’s Compensation paralegal, I realize one of the most important skills I have learned is how to listen “right”: without second guessing, with care, and while keeping in mind how to move forward with the claim to get the most benefit for the injured worker.
Having dealt with a variety of injured workers and their circumstances through the years, this listening practice has led me to the realization that no matter how small or how large the case, injured workers are often left feeling the same: frustrated and confused. The injured worker who is in need of representation is generally frustrated. Not only are they suffering from the injury, delay in medical care, financial hardship, possible loss of employment, but also the effects of the injury on their family life. As an unrepresented injured worker, you typically get information about the Workers’ Compensation process from your employer, the claims adjuster, and often times the treating physician. Because this information can often be contradicting, it ends up causing the injured worker more frustration and confusion.
Listening is part of what helps us transform a good case into a great (and substantial) case. Cases that on the surface may appear to involve only a simple or minor injury can become much more complicated as additional issues arise. Well-qualified legal representation knows the best methods to develop the case accordingly, in order to get the injured worker the benefits and settlements to which they are entitled.
If you are an injured worker or you know of someone who needs a worker’s compensation attorney who has a staff that listens and genuinely cares, contact Heiting & Irwin.
[***Edited by: Sara B. Morgan, Esq.]