March 18, 2013
Several changes to the way Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Benefits are distributed are being passed during the present legislative session. According to Knoxville News, Governor Bill Haslam’s reform bill received approval form both House and Senate committees earlier this week.
The main change that can be expected from the governor’s legislation is that claims that are currently being disputed will no longer be heard in a court of law. Under the new law, those cases will be decided on by an appointed commission.
While those in favor of the law claim it will help attract new businesses to the state and will also help existing businesses grow, opponents of the laws believe the changes will drastically cut the amount of benefits an injury victim will receive. Furthermore, those against the law say business interests were directly involved in the drafting of the bill, while no employee representatives were involved in the process.
One lawmaker pointed to individuals who attended the proceedings who would be directly affected by the changes. One of those people was a man who had sustained serious burn injuries and received a six-figure settlement for his injuries. Under the new laws, that settlement amount would have been significantly less.
The Memphis Personal Injury Lawyers with John Michael Bailey recognize these changes may make it more difficult for injured workers to receive the benefits they need. That’s why the firm suggests discussing your case with a qualified attorney if you have been hurt on-the-job.