A work injury can cause more problems than you can imagine. Without workers’ compensation benefits, it would be almost impossible to make the ends meet. However, injured workers make, quite costly, mistakes during their workers’ compensation benefits process. It is crucial for you to understand your legal rights and responsibilities if this occurs. Here you may find some of the most important things you need to know if you want to get the best out of your workers’ compensation claim.
- Report Your Injury
This is the thing that requires an instant reaction. Report your injury to the boss immediately. Every country demands the report on the injury up to a certain deadline, and these deadlines may vary considerably. If you miss the deadline, you are more likely to be left without your workers’ compensation benefits. In some countries, you will also be obliged to fill in the compensation form by a certain date and officially start your claim.
- Consider Getting an Attorney
You will not probably need an attorney in the process if your claim is very simple and the insurance company pays you the sum you claimed. On the other hand, there could be some situations when an insurance company denies your claim, reduces your benefits, makes a settlement, or ignores your claim and demands information. As an Albany work injury attorney explained, if this happens, it is essential for you to get an attorney, since your legal powers, as the physical entity, are limited. For instance, a lawyer can offer a problem solution and grant you the benefits that will cover your medical treatment, missed income, or other losses. Additionally, navigating the compensation system can be an utter nightmare, as well as when to accept the settlement and how much. The attorney can handle it for you and give you the right directions on how to value your claim, negotiate with the insurance company, and represent you, if there is a need.
- Medical Treatment
It is very important to receive medical treatment right after the injury. This will lead to a full and faster recovery. Also, the medical report is a piece of very important evidence in the process that documents your accident and describes your injuries and possible aftermath. If you keep on delaying your medical treatment, then you can possibly face some of the issues with the insurance company since they can interrogate whether the injury was so serious as you claim or if it ever happened.
- Change the Doctors
In most states, the initial examination must be done by the doctor provided by the insurance company. This can be a tricky situation with a potential conflict of interests. These doctors are primarily paid by the insurance company and might not have your claims in mind. They can minimize your injuries so that the insurance company will not have to pay you as much. Since the doctor plays an essential role in your treatment, and the entire process, a lot depends on the medical report written by the responsible doctor. If there is a problem with the doctor, then you should consider a doctor’s switch. This may not occur immediately, since the procedure varies depending on the country.
- Understand Your Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Injured workers should be acquainted with the available benefits of the workers’ compensation system. The different countries have different rules and legal procedures, but some of the benefits are usually available:
- temporary disability benefits: these benefits cover the pay while you cannot work due to the injury recovery
- permanent disability benefits: this is the compensation for the permanent work disability
- medical treatment: medical treatment of the injuries can be very costly, and it should be covered by the insurance
- vocational rehabilitation: job retraining and help finding a new job,
- mileage: compensation for your travel to and from a doctor, as well as for the companion you have.
Sometimes, these items are not followed nor respected by the insurance company, so you need to contact the workers’ compensation agency or have an attorney handle your case.
- Have Your Paperwork Detailed
It is always best for you to make double copies of the entire documentation and keep it ordered and out of sight. Additionally, make sure to have all the documentation from the doctor and to always demand the medical report since it is the main evidence of your injury and the recovery process. These documents are essential for getting your claim approved and eventually paid.
Suffering a serious injury at the workplace may cause numerous problems and be a long-lasting process, but by following this advice you will at least have a clue on what to do and expect.