As an employee, we are expected to perform at our best and gain profit for the company that we are working for. In return, our employers are required to compensate us with our salaries and benefits; however, aside from these straightforward responsibilities of our employers, we are also entitled to “workers’ compensation”.
“Workers’ compensation” pertains to a set of laws that outline specific compensations which an injured employee is entitled to claim. Workers’ compensation laws are found on each state’s statutes and have variations for each state, aside from this, there are also a workers’ compensation laws specifically written for industries such as the railroad industry since their employees face a different set of workplace hazard. Although there may be differences for each state’s workers’ compensation laws, majority of the states require that all businesses must have some form of workers’ compensation insurance to cover injured employees.
Here are things that you should know as an employee to successfully file a workers’ compensation claim if you suffered an injury or damage during a workplace accident:
1. Every employee is expected to act in a responsible manner inside the workplace. – You are not entitled to a claim if you were injured while violating a rule or regulation which specifically forbids you from participating in the activity that caused your injury. Your claim would also be invalidated if you were intoxicated or under the influence of illegal drugs when the workplace accident took place, or if you were injured while committing a crime inside your workplace.
2. It is your responsibility to report the injury. – If a workplace accident occurs and you are injured, make sure to report it to your employer or direct supervisor immediately. Your employer would then need to fill out a form, sometimes called “First Report of Injury”. Make sure that your employer fills this form, review it to be sure of its accuracy, and request a copy for yourself.
3. Keep all records of the accident and your injury. – Aside from the “First Report of Injury”, other documents pertaining to the accident should be kept and guarded for future reference and need. Documents like doctor’s records and forms you might receive from your employer’s workers’ compensation carrier should always be available to you.
4. Cooperate with your employer’s workers’ compensation carrier. – Depending on the insurance provider of your employer, you may need to undergo examination from a doctor of their choosing. This process is called “Independent Medical Examination” or IME and is often used by insurance companies to make sure that all your reported injuries and its severity are true. It may raise suspicions if you refuse to agree to an examination.
5. Get help when handling your claim. – Although a lawyer is not required when filing a workers’ compensation claim, consulting with an experienced lawyer on the subject may prove useful. Workers’ compensation claims often involve a lot of benefit computation and an expert may be able to help you compute for what you deserve and guide you through the workers’ compensation laws of your state.
Contact Hogan Injury for assistance in your workers’ compensation claim.
None of the content on Hoganinjury.com is legal advice nor is it a replacement for advice from a certified lawyer. Please consult a legal professional for further information.