In short, the consultation should be free; the lawyer should work on a contingency fee and advance the costs and expenses in your injury claim; and filing a claim should not cost you your job, as your employer is prohibited from demoting or terminating you in retaliation for filing a claim under the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act.
A Free Consultation from a Compassionate Attorney
Attorneys often charge for consultations or may limit the consultation to some period of time; however, you should be able to find a South Carolina workers’ compensation lawyer agreeable to consulting with you at no charge -for free- as well as an attorney willing to speak with you at whatever length necessary to address any questions or concerns prior to engaging the attorney in representation of your injury claim.
The Contingency Fee Agreement and Advancing Costs and Expenses
A contingency fee agreement is a contract between you and the law firm representing you containing the terms of representation. The agreement should state that the compensation to the lawyer or law firm is contingent -or depends upon- the recovery of monies on your behalf, and the law firm is entitled to a certain percentage of those monies. In South Carolina, the standard charge is one-third after deducting for advanced costs and expenses. The agreement with your lawyer or law firm should be in writing, and you should retain a copy for your records.
Filing a South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Claim Should Not Cost You Your Job
The South Carolina workers’ compensation system is a “no fault” system, meaning it usually does not matter who was at fault, but only that an accident and injury occurred to an employee subject to the Act. As such, one would not normally find an employer to be retaliatory to one making a claim for one’s legal rights and benefits under the law. Furthermore, there is a section of the Act that prohibits employers from terminating or demoting any employee because they have, in good faith, filed a workers’ compensation claim.
You should know your rights as it relates to your lawyer and law firm, as well as it relates to your claim as an injured employee, or an employee who has been retaliated against. Speak with your attorney about the possibility of any claim directly against your employer, and ensure that your attorney can represent you in both claims. Attorney Zach Naert never charges for consultations. Please feel free to contact Naert Law Firm for your free initial consultation by phone or in person, or via video conference.