If you have suffered a knee injury in a North Carolina workplace accident, you have the right to receive workers’ compensation benefits.
That said, you are probably wondering what you can expect your compensation to be. Fortunately, there is some information out there regarding the average workers’ comp knee injury settlement.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, there are some statistics and factors to consider when evaluating what you could potentially receive in a knee injury settlement.
What Does the Average Workmans’ Comp Knee Injury Claim Cost?
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), the average knee claim in workers’ compensation cases costs in 2019-2020 was $34,932. However, it’s important to note that this number is just an average and that each case is unique. Your claim might cost more or less depending on the type of injury you have and the severity. In addition, other factors like hospital costs and recovery time play a large role.
Common Types of Knee Injuries
There are several types of knee injuries that can occur in the workplace. Here are a few of the most common ones:
- Sprains/strains. Both sprains and strains are similar injuries that result when either the ligaments or muscles of the knee are damaged. Both sprains and strains commonly occur after falls and sudden twists or turns of the knee.
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears. The ACL helps stabilize the knee during movements and protects it from hyperextending. ACL tears commonly occur when the knee is twisted or rotated unnaturally.
- Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) tears. The PCL stabilizes the back of the knee and protects the various ligaments around the knee. A tear can occur when the knee is hit hard from the front while it is bent.
- Patellar tendonitis (PT). Also known as jumper’s knee, PT is a painful condition caused by inflammation of one of the patellar tendons, one of the main tendons in the knee. Overuse of the patellar tendon, often from repetitive jumping or running, can lead to tiny tears in the tendon and cause pain, swelling, and stiffness in the front of the knee.
- Contusions. A knee contusion, or bruise, occurs when you receive a direct blow to your knee. This can happen if you fall on your knee or if you are hit by a falling object.
- Fractures. A knee fracture occurs when one of the bones in your knee breaks. Recovery can take weeks or even months.
Sometimes we get more specific questions about settlement amounts regarding specific injuries. For instance, someone might ask about the average worker’s comp settlement for a torn meniscus. Or someone might ask about how an arthroscopic knee surgery affects settlements in workers compensation cases. It’s difficult to answer these questions without knowing the details of your specific case, especially because the severity of the injury is more important than the kind of injury. A bad case of PT may lead to a higher settlement than a minor ACL tear, even though ACL tears are typically more severe.
What Factors Affect My Workers’ Comp Settlement for My Knee Injury?
The first and important factor is the severity of the injury. More severe injuries, such as ACL or PCL tears, fractures, and dislocations, typically result in higher settlements. The reason for this is that these injuries often require more extensive medical treatment and have a greater impact on your life. The greater your medical expenses, the more you can recover.
Another factor is the degree to which the knee injury affected your ability to work. The more wages you lose because of the injury, the more you can recover. In some cases, your injury might permanently affect your ability to work. In that scenario, your settlement will be significantly higher.
Yet another factor is the quality of the evidence you have. If your injury has thorough documentation, then your case will be more persuasive. That’s why it is important to always document all symptoms and treatment related to the knee injury. This includes saving medical records, bills, and statements from healthcare providers.
Will Having an Attorney Affect My Knee Injury Settlement Amount?
Contrary to popular belief, it’s almost always vital to hire an attorney for your knee injury.
An attorney can help you navigate the complex world of workers’ compensation law. Second, workers’ compensation attorneys have experience and expertise in handling cases similar to yours. That means they can analyze your case based on their own experience and previous cases involving people with similar injuries as yours. Finally, they play a key role in gathering evidence, such as medical records, witness testimony, and expert opinions. This evidence in turn supports your case and increases your chances of getting a higher settlement amount.
We’re Ready to Get You the Settlement You Deserve
At EMP Law, we focus on giving our clients exactly what they deserve. Our North Carolina workers’ compensation lawyers have decades of collective experience helping workers just like you get a fair settlement. Reach out to us today to learn more about what your case is worth and what your legal options are. Call (336) 724-2828 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation.