Tony was a dedicated firefighter for several years, and he loved his job. He woke up with his right ear feeling like a blown speaker one day. He thought it was the effect of working long hours the previous night. However, he realized that the more he stood near the station’s sirens, the worse it became.
What is Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss refers to the diminishing of a person’s listening ability. You find it harder to hear speech and other sounds. Hearing loss is a natural process that often comes with aging, diminishing after you hit 40 years, and it becomes worse when you hit 80 years. This is called age-related hearing loss.
But you can also experience loss of hearing due to work-related injury. Noise-induced hearing loss is compensable. Here is what you need to do to get compensated.
Step 1: Get a Doctors Opinion
The first step is to visit a qualified medical doctor to diagnose the condition properly. The doctor performs audio tests to determine the extent of the injury. Remember that legal issues have deadlines in the state, so you need to act fast if you need positive results.
The doctor needs to prove that the injury was caused by the work environment and not aging.
Step 2: Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
It might seem like a straightforward case to you, but it isn’t. It is a legal process that requires Miami workers comp lawyers.
The role of these lawyers is, first of all, to make sure you have a case. The lawyers review the case and determine whether it should proceed or not. Your medical documents are vital at this stage.
Step 3: Contact the Person Responsible
The lawyers contact the company or insurer responsible for your hearing loss. The responsible person might require you to attend a medical examination with a certified ENT surgeon. The lawyers then present the evidence to the company, and with your permission, they can afford them the opportunity to settle the case out of court. If this isn’t possible, then the case goes to trial.
Step 4: The Trial
If you are happy with taking the case to court, the lawyers come up with a petition. The petition allows the judge to review the case and start the proceedings.
Many people are afraid about the time it takes for the case to be resolved. It would be best if you had competent Miami worker comp lawyers by your side because they take over the case and handle all the work on your behalf. All you have to do is provide all the information needed and wait for updates on the case’s progress.
How long does the Process Take?
The process can take a few months or several years. It all depends on a few factors—first, the severity of the hearing loss. We usually advise you to get all the treatments that the doctor recommends. The aim is to make sure you are fully healed before the case commences. If the injury was severe, the healing could take several years.
Another factor is the insurance company, which can take a long time to settle if they feel the settlement is excessive, or they might choose not to respond to the negotiations.
What Can a Miami Worker Comp Lawyer Do for You
Finally, your lawyer plays a huge role in how long the case lasts. If he understands the process, you are in for a short time. If you work with a lawyer that doesn’t know what to do and when to do it, you are in for a long ride. Therefore, always choose your Miami worker comp lawyers carefully.