The Workers’ Compensation Process
First, notify your employer of your injury.
If you get hurt at work, you have to notify your employer. The law says you have to give your employer written notice of an accident or injury at work within 15 days. So if you get hurt at work, use your employer’s accident notification form, or simply write one out on a piece of paper. Tell your boss when you got hurt, where you were at work, and how it happened. I’d also recommend keeping a copy for yourself, in case you need it later.
Remember—if you don’t give this notice within 15 days, you may not be able to pursue a claim, and your injuries may not be covered.
Next, seek medical care for your injuries.
Under Workers’ Compensation, the employer’s plan should pay for the cost of your healthcare. Make sure you make all of your appointments and do what your doctor tells you to do to fully recover. Your doctor will likely monitor your progress and report back to you, and you should retain any documents you receive from your doctor.
Finally, begin the Claims Process.
The final step you’ll go through is the Workers’ Compensation claim process. It’s a process you’re allowed to try on your own, but I typically do not recommend it. The last thing you need to worry about while you’re recovering from your workplace injury is fighting against an insurance adjuster for the pay and benefits you deserve.
Under WorkComp law, you’re entitled to pay that will account for lost wages during your time off. That pay is considered a temporary disability and will be calculated based on a complicated formula. For most workers, the maximum number of weeks’ worth of pay you can receive will be 500.
After you’ve completed your medical treatment, the doctor will inform you that you have reached “Maximum Medical Improvement,” or “MMI.” If you’ve fully recovered, that will generally be the end of your claim. However, if you’re permanently disabled because of the workplace accident, you’re entitled to permanent partial disability pay.
For permanent partial disability, you’ll be assigned a disability rating that will take into account whether you can return to work or go to work at another job. Regardless of what the rating is, you’ll only be entitled to benefits based on up to 500 to 700 weeks’ worth of pay, No matter the rating, it's important that it is accurate. Otherwise, you won’t get paid enough.
At the end of the day, my goal is to worry about the legal side of filing a workman’s compensation suit, so you can focus on recovering from your injuries. Put my knowledge and experience on your side, and schedule a free consultation today.