You are probably entitled to benefits after a work accident. Don't take it for granted, though, that everything will go smoothly. Working with a workers' compensation insurance company can be tough. For some tips on taking action after a work injury, read on.
Report the Injury Quickly and Correctly
Waiting too long to file a workers' compensation claim can cause problems. The workers' compensation insurance company can be suspicious about delayed claims. They might doubt the validity or the seriousness of the injury if you wait too long. Use care when completing the claim form and signing it. Never sign a form that is incomplete. The insurer might kick the form back to you and that will delay your benefits. In addition, inform your direct supervisor about the injury immediately if possible. Waiting shows that the injury was not urgent and that may disqualify you from benefits.
Visit Your Doctor
As soon as you can, see your doctor or go to the emergency room. You cannot be paid workers' compensation benefits without seeking medical treatment. Let the medical personnel know that your injury is because of your job. The doctor may be required to perform a drug test and you must comply if you expect to be paid benefits. You can fight against claims of being under the influence of a substance but not against refusing to take the test.
Your doctor may order you to remain home and recuperate. You should never consider disobeying this advice. During your convalescence, attend all medical appointments and comply with your doctor's instructions. If you need to be seen by a specialist, the workers' compensation insurer will cover that expense if the doctor refers you. For example, some victims are referred to orthopedic surgeons, physical therapists, and others.
Expect to be Paid
If you are unable to work because of the injury, you may be paid if the doctor orders your recuperation. The amount you receive varies. However, don't expect to be paid your usual salary while out of work. The payments are not considered income and are not taxed. If you are not receiving your payments or they are consistently late, contact the insurer. If your payments are not being provided to you in a timely manner and speaking to the insurer does not work, consult with a workers' compensation lawyer. Workers' compensation benefits are a right of workers, and you may be owed interest payments and more when the insurer fails to provide them.
If your claim for benefits is turned down or you have problems with your benefits, speak to a workers' compensation attorney for help.