Employees who are injured on the job may struggle to work efficiently. To help employees recover from their injuries, employees can apply for workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits could provide injured workers with health coverage and back pay.
Workers’ comp is a no-fault system. In other words, an employee could still receive benefits if a workplace hazard or co-worker’s negligence caused the injuries or if the worker made a mistake that led to their injuries.
Injured employees don’t receive their benefits automatically. Employees must make a claim, which is then investigated. There are steps that employees must take before they receive any workers’ compensation benefits. Here’s what you should know:
Seek medical attention
It’s important that injured workers seek medical help immediately after an accident. Even if medical attention is not immediately needed, a record can help show when the injury happened and how it has affected the worker.
There are many different kinds of injuries that would make an employee eligible for medical benefits. Dismemberment or traumatic head and spine injuries can have clear consequences for employees. But, strains, back pains and diseases may also qualify employees for benefits. Many companies, however, required workers to seek specific doctors for their injuries.
Make a claim within the statute of limitation
When possible, workers should report their injuries to their employer or supervisor and create a claim. Employees have 60 days to report the injury and a year to file the claim – but reporting an injury and making a claim much sooner can help avoid allegations that an injury is not connected to work.
Understand your rights
An injury and workers’ comp claim doesn’t guarantee that a worker will get health benefits. A workers’ comp claim can be denied for many reasons. For example, a claim could be denied because it was not made within the statute of limitations or because the worker’s injuries were not enough to prevent them from working.
It can help injured employees to learn about their legal rights when filing a workers’ compensation claim.