Many personal injury law attorneys and their staff will tell you that working with clients who have been injured is part legal work and part social work. In additional to pain from the injuries and having to go to doctors, being unable to work is a huge deal for some victims who may have jobs that don’t pay if they don’t go to work. They may even lose their jobs. How can they live and support their family without a paycheck?
How to help a victim of a personal injury accident who can’t work
There are a few things a personal injury law attorney can do to try and help a client who can’t work.
- Call your client’s employer, if necessary, to verify that he cannot work and could they please save this job until he was medically cleared to return to work.
- Have your client figure out how many vacation, sick or others days he has available to cover his time off while still getting a pay check or being able to keep his job.
- If your client works for a company with more than 50 employees and has been employed there for a year or more, he is entitled to 12 weeks of leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act. Although he won’t get paid during that time, he won’t lose his job.
- Companies with more than 15 workers must accommodate an injured employee who is unable to do his job. The employer should be asked if there is any other job you can do and if he can be flexible in the hours your client works.
- If your client’s work is something he can do at home, have him ask his employer if this is possible.
- If your client is permanently disabled, he can apply for Social Security disability benefits.
- A few states, like California, Rhode Island, Hawaii, New York and New Jersey, provide injured employees temporary disability insurance through state-run programs.
- If your client can’t make his mortgage or credit card payments, the federal government offers the Home Affordable Modification Program to help with the mortgage. Have your client contact his mortgage holder and ask about it.
- Call your client’s landlord and medical providers and ask them to put a lien on the eventual settlement.
Suffering the pain from a personal injury is bad enough and when it is compounded by financial problems, it can wreak havoc on someone’s life. If any readers out there have other suggestions on how to help clients who can’t work during their recovery, please comment here.
Group Matrix Blog – March 26, 2018 – by Sharon Bowles