Many people get injured at work due to various reasons. Whether it’s an injury caused by a slip and fall accident or one suffered because of unacceptable working conditions, all of these may entitle you to file a workplace compensation. Essentially, workers’ compensation refers to an insurance program that provides employees injured or ill in the workplace with medical and wage replacement benefits.
However, it’s important to note that dealing with worker injuries and workplace compensation may not be easy. Some factors are needed to be considered to achieve a more favorable outcome for your situation.
So, if you’ve been injured while working for your employer, here are five things that you need to know to help you understand workplace injuries and workers’ compensation:
Your Injury Must Be Covered By Workers’ Compensation
One of the essential things to keep in mind is that your injury must be under the coverage of workers’ compensation. For example, suppose you got a back injury due to a slip and fall accident in the office. In that case, you may be eligible to get compensated under the workers’ compensation insurance program.
However, when the injury you suffered isn’t related to work, your compensation claim may be denied by the insurance service provider. Some common injuries that may warrant a denial of compensation can include those which are self-inflicted, caused by a fight at work, felony-related, or due to drugs or intoxication.
You Can File A Second Workers’ Compensation Claim For An Old Injury
If you’re wondering if you can still file a second claim for an old injury, the answer may be yes, depending on the state you’re living. For instance, suppose you sustained a back injury at work, then filed a workers’ compensation claim, and obtained a judge ruling or settlement. In that case, you may still get compensated if your old injury comes back or your new condition stems from that old injury.
Although, navigating an old workers’ comp claim for the second time can be more complicated and confusing. As such, you need to work with an experienced attorney to help you. Since the benefits may be apportioned in your second claim, your legal representative can help minimize the potential negative impact on the compensation benefits you should be receiving.
There’s A Deadline For Filing Workplace Compensation Claim
You should also know that filing a workplace compensation claim comes with a timeline, usually known as the statute of limitations. It refers to a time limit in which you should file your claim. Failure to do so can mean losing your right to seek compensation for your work-related injury.
For example, if you’re living in New York, the statute of limitations for filing a compensation claim is two years from when you suffered an injury. Therefore, to avoid any trouble, make sure not to wait for a long time before filing a claim. That way, you can have higher chances of receiving the compensation your recovery needs.
You Need To See A Doctor Right Away
If you want to get compensated for your workplace injury, you need to see a medical professional right away to provide proof about what happened. When you get yourself examined and treated immediately, you can obtain the medical records you require to prove your injury was work-related.
Nevertheless, when seeing a doctor, make sure they’re certified to handle injuries under the workplace compensation program. If your employer has recommended one for you, go to that medical provider for assessment and treatment. Otherwise, your medical bills may not be covered by workers’ compensation.
You Need To Notify Your Employer
Aside from seeking prompt medical attention, you also have to report the workplace accident and the injury to your employer. Make sure you let them know about what happened as soon as possible. Whether the injury is minor or severe, telling your employer regarding it allows you to fill up an incident report.
Remember, failure to inform your employer may affect your ability to recover benefits from the workplace compensation program.
Evidence Is Required To Strengthen Your Workers’ Comp Claim
If you want to improve the odds of having a successful compensation claim, you need to gather evidence to prove your injury is work-related. These pieces of evidence can include medical reports, photos of the accident scene, a medical certificate indicating your injury, witness statements, and other forms of documentation.
In case you need help with the evidence-collection process, you can seek legal assistance to get it done correctly. Most reliable attorneys have professional connections to help you obtain the necessary evidence you need.
Being injured in the workplace allows you to get compensation for your injury. However, the process can be tricky if you have no idea what steps to take from start to finish. So, keep the information mentioned above in mind, and you’ll know how to handle worker injuries and workplace compensation more efficiently. By doing so, you can protect your rights following an accident at work.