Hear from Justin Cohen
Partner at Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen:
Quick and easy steps for securing workers' comp benefits:
And we don’t get paid unless you do.
Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen
Board-Certified Workers' Compensation Lawyers
At Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen, we have over 25 years of experience helping injured forklift operators throughout New Jersey.
We know how to get the benefits and compensation our clients deserve, and our team fights for you every step of the way.
Looking for More Specific Answers?
You may hear that you don’t need an injury lawyer when filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits in New Jersey. We disagree. The insurance company responsible for your claim has one goal in mind; pay as little on your claim as possible. The insurance company may deny your benefits or take the position that you are ready to return to work, even if you are still recovering from your work injury.
That’s why it’s in your best interests to consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.
At Kotlar, Hernandez & Cohen, we determine the benefits you deserve and we will fight every attempt at delay or denial by the insurance company. If your case comes to trial, our board-certified trial attorneys are ready to fight for you in court.
Employers and insurance companies can dispute your workers’ compensation claim. They may take the position that your injury was pre-existing or had nothing to do with your job. Or they may say you are ready to return to work before you’re medically cleared for full duties.
Our workers’ compensation team includes several attorneys who used to represent the employer insurance companies, so we know the tactics they use to avoid their responsibilities to the injured worker. We will provide aggressive representation and litigation whenever necessary. In some cases, we can help you pay for an independent medical evaluation to help prosecute your claim.
When there is a dispute over workers’ compensation benefits, at some point the insurance company may make a settlement offer. However, the offer they make often falls short of the benefits that you could receive after litigation. They are betting you are willing to accept less because you are in a tough medical and financial situation. We strongly urge all clients to at least get a consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney before accepting any settlement offer. We will help guide you in making an informed decision that truly fits your needs and entitlements.
Absolutely. New Jersey is a “no fault” state in workers’ compensation law. That means you are eligible for medical and disability benefits even if you were responsible for causing the accident that led to their injuries.
It also means that under most circumstances, you cannot sue your employer in a third-party liability claim. However, if a third party, such as a vendor or independent contractor, was responsible for causing the accident that led to your injuries or occupational diseases, you may be able to take legal action. At our firm, we have board-certified civil trial attorneys specializing in personal injury to help you throughout this process, as well.
Yes. All employees are covered under the workers’ compensation system, even those who just recently started the job. As long as your injury or illness was caused by a work-related accident or occupational exposure, you should be covered.
But in some cases, employers have challenged workers’ comp claims, taking the position that the injured person was actually an independent contractor and not an employee. Our attorneys will fully investigate your case and fight all attempts to deny you the benefits to which you are entitled.
Depending on your situation, your employer or insurance carrier could be responsible to provide you with medical treatment (covering medical expenses) and temporary disability benefits while you’re unable to work due to your injury. If you’re left with a permanent impairment, you may be eligible for a permanent partial disability award, even if you’re able to return to work. If left permanently and totally disabled by your workplace injuries, you may be able to recover a lifetime of workers’ compensation benefits. In the worst case scenario, even death benefits can be applied, with the beneficiary being a spouse or dependents.
The best thing you can do to learn and assess your options is consult with one of our workers’ compensation attorneys.
Sometimes, a workplace accident can leave a worker with a permanent disability that prevents them from returning to work, but permanent disability caps at up to 70% of wages at the time of injury, meaning that it does not take variables such as inflation into consideration. If you were left permanently and totally disabled by your work-related injury, it is essential to secure a disability pension and social security benefits.
The best thing you can do in this situation is contact our law firm as soon as possible to ensure you’re getting the best possible outcome in your claim.
We like to call these Defense Medical Exams because in our experience, while the insurance companies are entitled to send injured workers to an Independent Medical Exam (IME) to determine if they are able to return to work and/or if they require medical treatment, there’s often nothing independent about the exam at all.
However, it’s our job as your legal representation to review the fairness and accuracy of these exams and challenge their results if necessary to make sure you’re not released from treatment or sent back to work prematurely. We won’t back down from an unfair exam result.
Under New Jersey law, claims for workers’ compensation benefits must be filed within two years from the date you received your last workers’ compensation benefit, or two years from the date were injured on the job or learned of a work-related illness.
If your workers’ compensation claim is denied, you should contact our team immediately so we can file a claim petition on your behalf and present your case to the court with intent to acquire you the benefits you’re entitled to as soon as possible.
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