Workers’ compensation claims can be a tricky topic that most people know very little about. While not getting hurt on the job is a good thing for your health, it’s very hard to prevent. That’s especially true if you have a job that’s physical in nature or inherently dangerous.
What you do after an injury on the job is what’s really going to impact your workers’ compensation eligibility. Keep reading to learn more about workers’ compensation and how you can make sure you get the fair treatment you deserve.
How Fast Do I Have to Report an Injury?
How fast you report your accident or on the job injury can play a major role in whether or not you’re eligible for workers’ compensation. While it does vary from state to state, you generally need to report any injury within 30 days.
However, there’s simply no reason to wait that long when you’ve been hurt on the job. Ideally, you should report your injury as soon as possible – even on the very same day. Even if you’re able to stay at work and don’t need immediate medical attention, letting your employer know about an incident will make it easier when trying to deal with workers’ compensation claims down the road.
When in doubt, report your injury right away. If you don’t need medical attention or need to file a claim, that’s okay. If you do need workers’ compensation and you didn’t tell your employer in time, though, you could be out of luck.
Do I Need to See My Doctor?
When you get hurt on the job, the first thing you really need to do is go and see your doctor. In some cases, you may have to make this appointment on your own, especially if you work for a small company that doesn’t have a doctor they recommend for on the job injuries.
Having a doctor you trust on your side is a very good thing. When you’re considering workers’ compensation claims, you want somebody you can trust to tell you the severity of your injuries.
Waiting too long to go to the doctor even if you’re not in pain right away is a poor decision. If pain starts a week later or you have lasting consequences for something that seems minor at the time, you may not have any recourse when it comes to workers’ compensation.
Do I Pay Medical Bills?
The whole concept behind workers’ compensation is that employees shouldn’t have to pay medical bills when they’re injured on the job as part of their regular responsibilities. Suffering a loss of income when you’re hurt at work is also something workers’ compensation laws aim to prevent.
When you visit your doctor for the first time or need immediate medical treatment, you may need to pay your medical bills on your own, either through insurance or out of pocket. Later, you can try to recoup this money as part of your workers’ compensation claim. In some cases, your employer may pay for immediate medical attention, but this isn’t’ always the case.
For some, having to pay initial medical bills can keep them from going to the doctor the first time. Fight the temptation to self-treat your injuries to save a few dollars. You may pay a lot more down the road when you’re unable to collect workers’ compensation because there is no documentation of your injuries.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
Workers’ compensation claims cases can be very difficult. In some situations, your employer may not even want to pay out a claim and put up a serious fight against you. In others, technicalities can make all of the difference.
If you’re looking to get workers’ compensation, you need a qualified attorney on your side. When you get hurt on the job, you deserve compensation for your injuries. Trying to get the compensation you deserve without legal representation may not work.
If you don’t win your case, you could be left with nothing. Don’t let that happen to you.