We hear this question quite a bit. Unfortunately, our Workers’ Compensation Law has, for several decades, been pretty unfair to working folks. Many disputed workers’ compensation claims are either hard to win, provide insufficient benefits to the employee, if won, or both; creating an unfortunate situation wherein a fair number of hard working Arkansans simply can’t find a lawyer willing to take their case. Although having a lawyer isn’t absolutely necessary in a workers’ compensation claim, folks who proceed without one ultimately run the risk of getting run over and overwhelmed by the insurance company and its attorney. The system allows a claimant to proceed without a lawyer, in a pro se capacity, and our Administrative Law Judges always go out of their way to be helpful in this regard. However, judges can’t serve as your attorney, and they are legally bound to hold an injured worker to the burden of proving his case, regardless of whether he has counsel or not. At Hart Law, we fight hard for working folks and we’ve been known take cases other lawyers either don’t want or haven’t handled very well and then returned to the client. If you’re having difficulty finding a lawyer to take or keep your case, give us a call. We’d be privileged to visit with you about your options.
Neal L. Hart, Attorney at Law