The moment you feel pain at work, fear floods your mind. How will you pay for this injury? How will you keep paying your bills if you can’t work?
Do you know your worker’s rights? Do you know what to do if you’re injured on the job?
When you sustain a serious injury on the job, you need to focus on healing and not on your lost wages. Keep reading to learn the specifics steps of what to do when you sustain an injury and need to seek compensation from your employer.
Report Your Injury
When you sustain an injury on the job or become sick, tell your supervisor immediately.
You will have to provide a written explanation. Some states have a deadline on when you need to report your injury, so make sure you report it as soon as you can.
If you suffer from an illness that you’ve contracted over a long time at your work, you should notify your employer as soon as you receive the diagnosis.
Wait For Your Employer
Once you’ve reported your injury or illness, you need to sit back and wait. At this point, the ball lies in your employer’s court. They have the responsibility of informing you of your worker’s rights and worker’s comp benefits.
If at any point in the process you feel like your employer is not treating you fairly, you can hire any one of many workers comp lawyers on the market. Look for a worker’s comp attorney with experience helping employees injured on the job.
Your employer may have you fill out the necessary paperwork. Then your employer should file a claim with their insurance company. Your personal medical doctor will have to fill out a report as a part of this process as well.
Depending on what state you live in, you may have to report your injury to the state division of workers’ compensation or the workers’ comp board.
Next, your employer will receive notice if the insurer has approved or denied the claim. If they approve the claim, they will inform your employer, and your employer will contact you with information on how much payment you will receive.
You still have a choice at this point. Your attorney will help you decide if you should accept the offer or negotiate for a larger structured settlement or lump-sum settlement. If the offer does not adequately cover your medical bills and lost wages, your attorney may encourage you to negotiate for a larger settlement.
If the insurance company denies your claim, you can file a formal appeal through the state workers’ comp commission or board or you can request a reconsideration from the insurance company.
Go Back To Work
If you can return to work, you must provide a written notice to the insurance and employer. If you have sustained a serious injury, the insurance company can pay permanent disability benefits.
Most employers aim to help their workers get back to work through a formal return-to-work program. The program could provide you with modified work duties or train you in a different skill if you can’t complete your previous responsibilities.
Know Your Worker’s Rights
Review your policies on worker’s rights to protect yourself before you need to seek out a workers’ comp attorney. Understanding your rights will protect you as well as your employer in the process.
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