New Hampshire Personal Injury Blog
New Hampshire NH Work Injury Law
When injured at work, you only have a certain amount of time to file a claim to get compensated for your injury. In New Hampshire, you have up to two years to notify the employer of your injury. Even then it is wise to file the claim immediately. The longer you wait, the more skeptical the employer and insurance carrier will be.
The first things you need to do are notifying your employer and seek medical care. Your employer is required to file the claim, even if they question the injury. In the event that this does occur, contact a local work injury lawyer in New Hampshire. They will help you to address the situation.
Your employer should have the necessary worker’s compensation forms for you to fill out. It then becomes your employer’s responsibility to submit the forms to the appropriate insurance carrier. If they don’t have the forms, or refuse to file them, you can file a claim yourself with the state’s worker’s compensation agency, in NH it is the Department of Labor in Concord.
The insurance company will investigate the claim. They have 21 days to make a decision to accept or deny your claim in NH. An adjuster will be assigned and want to speak with you and any witnesses, as well as your employer and co-employees. In many cases the insurance carrier will accept the claim and agree to pay benefits.
However, things may not go so smoothly. An employer may dispute your claim or the medical record may not be clear. The best way to deal with this is to keep good documentation of your injuries and the treatment. It may also be a good time to consider hiring a worker’s compensation attorney for your workplace accident if you have not done so already. Having documentation on hand will help the process considerably.
There are many things to consider when thinking about hiring an attorney to help you with a worker’s compensation claim. Keep in mind that many workers’ compensation attorneys do very little advertising. They often rely on word of mouth to advertise their business. Begin your search by talking to friends and family members to see if they have a recommendation. If they don’t have one, you can find some through an Internet search.
Once you’ve found an attorney, check their website to see if they emphasize worker’s compensation cases. Do they have a blog or page that features worker’s compensation articles? If you like what you read, call them for an initial consultation. The consultation should be free.
Treat the initial consultation like a job interview. While the attorney will usually discuss your case and ask you many questions about your injury, remember to ask the attorney questions as well. Make sure to ask them how long they have been in practice and how long they have handled worker’s compensation cases.
If you have been injured in a workplace accident, you are entitled to file a worker’s compensation claim. Even if your claim has been denied you may be entitled to compensation for your injury. Don’t give up.Please contact Feniger & Uliasz to ask how we can help you.
CONDOMINIUM LAW In New Hampshire
REPAIR VERSUS IMPROVEMENT
Often times Board members, officers and managers of condominiums face the decision of whether the action they want to take is a “repair” or “improvement”. The decision has consequences because most condominium documents limit what a Board may spend for an improvement without a vote of the entire membership whereas repairs are within their discretion and part of their fiduciary duty to operate the condominium. In addition, the cost for repairs is paid out of reserves or through a special assessment. Improvements allocated and budgeted through the operating account. The ongoing dispute of the definition of “repair” and “improvement” has been the cause of a lot of litigation.
Until recently, “improvement” remained undefined for purposes of the New Hampshire Condominium Act, RSA 356-B. In a decision dated June 9, 2017, in the case of Condominiums at Lilac Lane Unit Owners Association v. Monument Garden, LLC, the Supreme Court offered a definition of “improvement” as it applies to at least one section of the statute. Given the decision we would postulate that the same definition would apply across the board. The court defined the term improvement to mean, “a permanent addition to or betterment of real property that enhances its capital value and that involves the expenditure of labor or money and is designed to make the property more useful or valuable as distinguished from ordinary repairs”.
It would be prudent for Boards of Directors, officers and managers to take this definition into consideration in determining whether contemplated projects in their condominium association are “repairs or “improvements”. It is incumbent on directors and officers to apply the “business judgment rule” which includes evaluating the legal definitions of terms contained in the governing documents and the condominium act. The obligation is one of a fiduciary, a very high legal standard. One way to discharge the duty is to seek a legal opinion from an attorney experienced in condominium law in New Hampshire. While there are several law firm that have attorneys licensed in New Hampshire, our law firm is located in New Hampshire and our attorneys live in New Hampshire. So if you need advice regarding New Hampshire condominium law contact Feniger & Uliasz, LLP, (www.fenigeranduliasz.com) located right here in New Hampshire.
New Hampshire Worker’s Compensation: Choosing A Doctor
When you get hurt at work who gets to pick your doctor? The short answer is simple – you do. In almost every worker’s compensation claim in New Hampshire, you, the injured worker gets to pick the doctor you want to see. That goes for doctors, chiropractors, hospitals, physical therapy and any other medical treatment you may need. Why? Because the New Hampshire Worker’s Compensation Act (RSA 281-A:5) says so. Do employers and worker’s compensation insurance companies like that? Of course not and sometimes they try to direct you to doctors of their choice. Sometimes they hire nurse case managers who make the recommendations. So if you get hurt at work and you have a doctor you trust, that is who you should go to for treatment and a referral to a specialist if necessary.
Over the past 30 years of representing injured workers I have seen employers and worker’s compensation insurance companies force unknowing workers into doctors of their choice simply because the injured worker did not know their rights. In a recent case, an out of state adjuster told a client that she could not treat with the doctor she was referred to. When I spoke with the adjuster it turned out that she handles many states and simply did not know the rules in New Hampshire. That should never happen but, it does and, of course, we got it straightened out. Perhaps that is the point of this article; human resource people and adjusters don’t always get it right. When they don’t who suffers? You, not them. Your worker’s compensation claim is compromised, you don’t get treatment with the doctor you trust and worst of all, you may not get the treatment you need and may not recover. In the end, everybody keeps their job except you because you are the only one that didn’t get better and cannot return to your job. It does not matter if you worked for the employer for 3 months or 30 years.
So, to the final point. When you get hurt at work talk to a lawyer that knows the law of worker’s compensation. You may not need to hire a work injury attorney but, you do need to know the law. You have a lot at stake. I have been representing injured workers for 30 years and an officer in the New Hampshire Bar Association specifically for worker’s compensation. If there is a message to send anyone injured at work it is to call a lawyer before there is a problem. The good lawyers will take the time to speak with you and let you know what to expect. Of course, I would like you to call my law firm, Feniger & Uliasz. LLP. My name is Michael Feniger. I will speak with you myself and do my best to answer your questions. You may not always get the answers that you want but, I will tell you what you need to know. Call me (603-627-5997), I can help.
Memorial Day 2017 Travel Tips for New Hampshire – Avoid Auto Accidents
New Hampshire Memorial Day and Summer Driving Precautions
Memorial Day is considered the unofficial start of the summer season. Holiday travel, school graduations, charity walks, festivals and warm weather activities bring throngs of locals and tourists out. It also begins the “100 Deadliest Days” of the year according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. AAA projects that 39.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home this Memorial Day weekend. That is a one million increase in travel from 2016. “In the last five years about one thousand people will die in crashes with teenage drivers in the 100 days from Memorial Day until school resumes”, a AAA study found”. The AAA study also found an average of 1,022 people died in car crashes involving teens during this period. Causes of accidents are primarily driver distraction related activities such as cell phones, texting and talking to others in the vehicle. Drunk and impaired driving also contributes to these horrific numbers.
New Hampshire with its many attractions experiences an inordinate amount of vehicular traffic. As you make plans to hit the roads for Memorial Day 2017, be sure to follow good traffic safety precautions and if you have a teenage driver, plan to have a heart to heart conversation with him/her about practicing good common sense on the road. No drinking before/during driving, buckling up, putting down the phone and being alert to the probability that many of the drivers on the road are not familiar with New Hampshire roads.
If you do have the misfortune of being involved in an accident through little or no fault of your own, please contact an experienced local auto accident lawyer in the New Hampshire area. We our proud of our over 25 years serving New Hampshire residents and visitors. Our motto from day one is and continues to be: “Big enough to serve, small enough to care.” We have offices in Manchester and Dover NH.