If you were recently injured while on the job, you will need to file a workers' compensation claim. Make sure you pay attention to the details and get it filed promptly, otherwise you might lose the benefits owed to you. Here are some important do's and don'ts to keep in mind when filing this type of claim.
Do: Get the claim forms from your employer
Instead of struggling to visit the local workers' compensation office for the claim forms, ask your employer first. The human resources department should be able to provide these for you. They can also be very helpful when it comes to filling them out properly. Make sure you are clear and concise when filling out the claim form, describing in as much detail as possible how you got injured and what you were doing at the time. Note any dangers or hazards in that area of your work building as well. You should fill this out yourself; do not let your employer do it or you.
Do: Keep all of your records
While many workers' compensation claims are approved, your employer or the insurance carrier might deny your original claim. If this happens, you need to have important documentation and records to prove how and why you were injured. This includes any notes or photographs of the scene of the incident, witnesses who can testify to what happened, and medical records from when you got medical treatment. Also include any receipts for co-pays, prescriptions, and bills sent for any medical procedures you had to get. This will all come in handy when you file an appeal.
Don't: Wait too long to file the claim
If you fail to file the claim within the time limit for your state, you may be denied and there won't be anything a lawyer could do for you. As soon as you get injured at work, you should get medical treatment, then inform your supervisor about the injury. They will give you the claim paperwork promptly. Don't hesitate to fill it out and send it in as soon as you can. If any of the claim application seems confusing, ask your employer or get advice from a lawyer.
Don't: Assume you don't need a lawyer
Many people believe they don't need a lawyer for workers' compensation claims, and that is sometimes true. However, if you have a complicated claim or your original claim was denied, it is definitely worth getting one. Attorneys that have experience with workers' compensation cases can help you get the benefits you need without the hassle.