Salem, VA Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Coal Miners | No Fee Unless Compensation Is Recovered!
Proudly representing the residents of Salem and the surrounding communities, including Abingdon, Bristol, Damascus, Chilhowie, Kingsport, Lebanon, Johnson City, Boone, Marion, Lebanon, and throughout Virginia.
The rate of nonfatal injuries and illnesses experienced by bituminous coal miners is 66% higher than that of all other private industries, making coal mining a particularly dangerous field. Unfortunately, when an individual suffers a debilitating injury, it can place a victim and their family in financial peril. Many workers cannot return to work, as there are few light duty employment opportunities in the mining profession.
When a worker dies in a coal mining accident, the worker’s family is also impacted not only by the emotional loss of their loved one, but also from the financial impact of the lost earnings.
At The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, we understand the significant physical, emotional, and financial toll that coal mining accidents can take on workers and their loved ones. When an individual hires our firm, we put our decades of experience to work in exploring every potential avenue for maximum compensation.
Call our office today to schedule a free consultation with experienced Salem workers compensation lawyer Mark Hurt to learn about your legal rights.
Mark fervently believes in protecting the rights and interests of miners who have been injured needlessly after lifetimes of rigid work and dedication, and he can tenaciously fight in seeking the full and fair medical treatment and benefits injured workers deserve, and for the full compensation deserved by families who have lost a loved one in a coal mining accident.
How Much Does An Experienced Coal Mine Accident Attorney Cost?
Lawyers who represent injured miners in workers’ compensation cases provide representation on a contingency fee basis, meaning they receive a fixed percentage of the benefits and settlement they help an injured work obtain (and receive nothing if they are unsuccessful).
Because we work on a contingency fee basis, we do not receive a fee unless compensation benefits or compensation are recovered. Legal fees in Virginia workers’ compensation cases must be approved by the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission (the “Commission”) subject to the statutory rules and regulations. In general, legal fees for workers’ compensation matters are generally limited by the Commission to 20%-25% of the “back wage benefits,” and certain caps also apply. As a result, it usually does not cost any more to retain a highly experienced Virginia coal mining workers’ compensation lawyer than a lawyer who may not have any experience in this area.
We also represent injured workers and families in coal mining injury and wrongful death matters against “third-party” companies (companies other than the worker’s employer) on a contingency fee basis (we only receive a fee if compensation is obtained). The terms of this contingency fee representation and our representation in workers’ compensation matters are both set forth in (and governed solely by) our retention agreement.
How Are Virginia Coal Mining Accidents Commonly Caused?
Mining is a dangerous occupation—one in which workers are exposed to harsh working conditions, hazardous environmental concerns, and dangerous machinery. Common causes of coal mining accidents and cave collapse include:
- Dust explosions
- Failure to safely maintain a mining shaft
- Disregard of safety procedures
- Improperly used explosives
- Malfunctioning equipment
- Inadequate lighting
- Lack of safety equipment
- Toxic chemical exposure
- Black Lung Disease
- Poor air circulation or quality
Coal mining accidents can lead to catastrophic injuries, including traumatic brain injuries, cancer, spinal cord trauma, toxic chemical exposure, paralysis, broken bones, and wrongful death. If you were seriously injured or a loved one died in a coal mining accident, we invite you to call our office to learn about your options for pursuing workers’ compensation and other damages.
Negligence in the Workplace Can Also Cause Significant Coal Mine Injuries.
In addition to the aforementioned environmental dangers, coal mining companies or fellow employees can place workers in harm’s way. The following are a few common examples of preventable workplace negligence:
- Employee error
- Drug and alcohol abuse
- Inadequate training
- Poor safety records
- Overworked employees
Historically, countless coal miners were killed and injured in a rush to increase production at the cost of following safety features and processes. The decisions to do everything possible to increase production by cutting corners not only was wrong, but tragically miners paid with their lives, while owners and supervisors were unaffected (or even benefitted from such decisions).
These past practices are wrong. And they should certainly not continue today.
Can I Lose My Coal Mining Job if I File for Workers’ Compensation?
No. The law protects those filing for workers’ compensation benefits. If you are fired because you filed for benefits, in addition to your benefits claim, you will also have a case for wrongful termination.
Similarly, if your work position or other aspects of your work are negatively changed as the result of filing a workers’ comp claim, you will also have a case for illegal retaliatory action.
Who is Entitled to Seek Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Virginia?
All injured coal workers in Virginia are entitled to seek compensation through the workers’ compensation benefits program to recuperate lost wages and pay medical expenses. Still, there are times when a victim may also be entitled to pursue maximum compensation through a civil claim. For example, in cases of extreme recklessness, such as a deliberate disregard of safety standards, it may be possible to bring a cause of action against an employer. It may also be possible to pursue compensation from other third parties, including:
- Negligent contractors
- Manufacturers of defective equipment
- Other parties (other than an employer)
Does Virginia Workers’ Compensation Fully Cover All Medical Expenses?
In general, injured coal miners are eligible to receive medical treatment under Virginia’s workers’ compensation statute for medical expenses necessary to diagnose and treat an injury. Further, workers’ comp benefits can also help cover lost wages, ongoing care costs, and funeral expenses (if a loved one succumbs to their injuries).
Unfortunately, many workers’ compensation insurance companies try to discontinue treatment prematurely to save money and protect their bottom lines. When such issues arise, Salem coal mining workers’ compensation attorney Mark Hurt tenaciously fights for the full medical treatment that is rightfully owed.
Does Workers’ Compensation Provide Benefits for Disabilities Related to Black Lung Disease?
The federal Black Lung Benefits Act provides compensation to coal miners who are totally disabled due to pneumoconiosis (“Black Lung Disease”) arising out of coal mine employment.
The Division of Coal Mine Workers’ Compensation (known as the Federal Black Lung Program) helps administer claims filed under the Black Lung Benefits Act. The Act provides monthly payments and medical benefits to disabled coal miners and to survivors of coal miners whose deaths are attributable to the disease. Firm-founding attorney Mark Hurt handles federal claims under the Black Lung Benefits Act from start to finish on behalf of injured miners and the families of wrongful death victims.
Call Today to Schedule A Free Consultation With Salem Coal Mine Injury Lawyer Mark Hurt.
At The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, we are a full-service firm that files workers’ compensation claims and civil lawsuits against third parties on behalf of injured coal miners. We represent injured workers on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will not owe us anything if we cannot obtain the compensation you deserve.
Call Salem workers’ compensation attorney Mark Hurt today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to learn about your legal options for seeking benefits and maximum compensation.
I started receiving services through this law firm in 2017 for my workers compensation case. Over the years, this firm has been attentive, kind, patient and understanding to my needs. My calls were returned promptly, if the associate was unavailable at that time and I have had ample opportunity to speak with Mr Hurt directly concerning my case. With Mary Wilson, Bart Conway, Mr Hurt and others behind the scene, my case has progressed smoothly. I am very pleased with the services and attention I received at this firm and would recommend Mr Hurt, Mary and Bart for your needs.