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What Should Colorado Firefighters Know About Workers’ Compensation?

Posted on in Workplace Injury

Larimer County workers compensation attorney firefighter injury

With Colorado currently in the midst of the two largest wildfires in the state’s history, the importance of firefighters is clear now more than ever. If you have been involved in firefighting efforts, you know full well the risks that you face on a regular basis, and if you sustain an injury or illness as a result of your work, it is important that you understand how to obtain financial relief you need through a workers’ compensation claim.

Colorado Workers’ Compensation Laws

Under Colorado law, most employers are required to provide workers’ compensation benefits that cover employees’ work-related injuries and illnesses regardless of who was at fault. This provides important protection for firefighters, who are often at risk of injuries from fires and explosions, collapsing structures, and smoke inhalation, among other things.

Workers’ compensation benefits cover any medical expenses related to your injury or illness, including emergency and hospital care, surgery, medication, prosthetics, aids, and other supplies and treatment that assist in your recovery. It also provides compensation for a portion of your lost wages if you have to miss more than three work shifts. This can come in the form of temporary total or partial disability benefits if you are eventually able to return to work at full capacity, or permanent total or partial disability if your injuries will affect your work performance for the rest of your life.

In Colorado, volunteer firefighters can often be covered by workers’ compensation along with employed firefighters. State law also includes special provisions for firefighters who are exposed to hepatitis C on the job, or who develop brain, skin, or some other forms of cancer after at least five years of service as a firefighter.

Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Colorado

If you have been injured in the course of your service as a firefighter, you should seek medical treatment as soon as possible and be sure to report your injury to your employer within four business days of sustaining it to have the best chance of full compensation. You will then need to file a claim within two years of the injury to remain eligible.

An experienced workplace injury attorney can help you collect the medical records and evidence necessary to demonstrate the connection between your occupation and your condition, as well as the extent of the healthcare-related expenses and lost wages you have incurred or will incur. We can also help you follow the correct steps to file your claim, and we will stand up for your rights if your employer and their insurance company attempt to deny all or part of the compensation you are owed.

Contact a Larimer County Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

At Hoggatt Injury Law, we have great respect for firefighters who put their lives on the line to protect the environment and their communities, especially at a time when they are facing such dangerous threats. If you suffer an injury or illness while performing your duties, we want to help you achieve fair compensation. Contact our skilled Fort Collins workers’ compensation attorney today at 970-225-2190 to request a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.npr.org/2020/10/26/928014492/fight-against-colorados-2-largest-ever-fires-continues-aided-by-snow

https://www.iaff.org/presumptive-health/co/

 

https://cdle.colorado.gov/sites/cdle/files/WC_ACT_2020_linked_0.pdf

 

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

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Fort Collins, CO 80524

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