If you are injured while working, your safety net is workers’ comp. This is the system that ensures you can have all your medical expenses taken care of. Every worker is entitled to compensation for work-related injuries. However, many workers do not know what the process of filing a workers’ comp claim is actually like. It is vital that you understand what to do if you are injured. And not just those who have dangerous jobs need to know this information too. You can file workers’ comp for repetition-related activities, such as carpal tunnel, or mental injuries, such as stress.
How the Process Begins
The first thing you need to do to start the process of filing workers’ comp is report the injury. From there, your employer should take over and handle most of the important aspects. However, it is very important that you understand when to report the injury. As you might expect, it is always best to report the injury as soon as possible. Your number one concern should always be to receive the medical treatment you need. If you are in a medical emergency, you should immediately head to the hospital without worrying about reporting the injury.
Why You Should Report as Soon as Possible
The worst mistake you can make when it comes to workers’ comp is not reporting your injury. It is nearly as bad to delay reporting for many reasons. Additionally, you should also report any injury, no matter how minor you think it is at first.
- Delaying the report can make it more likely to be rejected.
- It makes the injury seem better than it really is.
- You may forget to report it before the short deadline.
- If the injury gets worse over time, it needs to already be reported.
- You may not realize how serious the injury is at first.
If you run into any issues getting the compensation you are entitled to, either because you missed a deadline or your case was denied, it is a good idea to speak with a workers’ compensation lawyer. You can appeal any claim denial, report your employer if they refuse to file, or take another one of the many options available to you. Your workers’ comp lawyer will be able to give you more information that is tailored for your situation specifically. If you think you might need legal representation, it is best not to delay hiring someone who knows the ins and outs of workers’ comp.
Your job is relatively uneventful. You and your fellow employees take all the safety precautions required and follow all the proper guidelines. However, there may come a time when an unfortunate event occurs that causes you to get hurt. When an accident happens during the normal course of business, you may be entitled to medical care and other financial benefits under your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. If you aren’t familiar with what is covered, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the basics.
Ask Human Resources
If you want to ensure that your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, you may want to check with management or the department in charge of benefits. This is typically known as human resources or employee relations. It is within your right to know if your employer carries this type of coverage. Some do not have to carry workers’ compensation insurance. The laws of your state dictate what the parameters are for insurance.
Coverage Provided by Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Falling off a ladder and breaking a bone may incapacitate you for quite a while. As long as you were practicing company-mandated safety procedures, and your employer carries insurance, you should be able to file a claim. As soon as you have an accident, it is imperative that you report it. It doesn’t have to be something as severe as a fracture – many other injuries may be eligible for workers’ compensation coverage such as:
- Muscle strains and sprains
- Illness caused by an environmental hazard
- Heart attacks and strokes
- Psychological issues such as anxiety
- Repetitive injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome
When it comes to psychological issues and repetitive injuries, you have to prove that the conditions were caused by your job. If you do not do something that requires you to use your hands all day, every day, you probably won’t qualify for a carpal tunnel claim.
The Claims Process
Once you report the injury or illness, the insurance provider will start the investigative process. This may involve you filling out a detailed report, speaking to a claims adjuster, handing over medical records and perhaps even witness interviews. During the early process, the insurance company may start paying medical providers directly for your treatment. They may also start paying you unemployment benefits if you can’t work. If the investigation concludes and the injury is confirmed to be work-related, the insurance company may also pay for your medication and any therapy and treatment associated with your continued care including surgery.
Speaking with a workers’ compensation lawyer in your area may give you the best shot at recovering all of your medical bills and expenses. An advocate who understands how the process works is a good ally, especially if you suspect the company may challenge your injury.
Consult with a workers compensation lawyers from Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt, who can help you take proper steps toward getting their surveillance evidence tossed out.