by Samuel Awe 08/18/2020
What To Do After A Work Injury
If you're injured on a job, the chances are that you'll be eligible to receive your workers' compensation benefits. However, there are a few things you need to do to avoid a delay in receiving the compensation benefits. In this post, you're going to learn more about the things you need to do after you sustained a work injury.
If I get injured on a job, what should I do?
The essential thing to know as an employee is that you should report a work injury immediately to your employer or supervisor, if possible, in writing, anytime you get injured on the job. While some states allow you to notify your employer about a work injury verbally, others require that you report the incident in a written form. However, to be on the safer side, you should report any injury you sustained on your job to your supervisory personnel or employer in a written format.
In some states, the filing deadline (also known as limitation statute) is short. So, you should file the reports instantly to prevent the loss of any legal rights you have to get your compensation benefits from your boss. Also, you need to know your rights after a work injury as it will help you protect your legal rights and prevent a delay in receiving your worker's compensation.
Get medical attention as soon as you can, especially if your illness or injury requires urgent treatment and file a workers' compensation claim. However, before you file the claim, you should consult with a lawyer who is experienced in handling claims related to workers' compensation. That will make the filing process smoother and help you to know the benefits you're entitled to receive.
If I get sick or injured at work, do I have to be treated by my doctor or the company's doctor?
Under the Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA), you may choose any competent medical personnel to treat you at first – even though there are some restrictions placed by the law on the use of chiropractors. If you're not under FECA, i.e., you're not a federal worker, your state law will apply.
Some state allows you to be treated by your doctor provided that you have this request in a written form before you got injured. However, a doctor recruited by their boss usually treats injured or sick employees. Typically, you only have to consult the company's physician for a maximum of 30 days before you can see your doctor.
If you're a federal worker and the medical reports that address workers' compensation officials' concerns and questions are submitted by your doctor, there'll be no problem unless your boss requests a second opinion doctor's report. There's no problem if the second opinion examination's report correlates with the opinions of your treating doctor, so the payment of your FECA compensation will continue with no interruption. However, if the first doctor's report is different or does not agree with the second opinion examination's report, the office will either:
Typically, the worker's compensation agency attaches more importance to the second opinion medical evaluation report than the treating doctor's report. You have the right to appeal if the second opinion examination modifies your compensation. The worker's compensation office will employ a "referee" or third doctor to resolve any conflicts in the first and second doctor's report if it declares a "tie" and agrees that both medical evidence have equal weight.
Your doctor's evaluation report will impact the compensation benefits you'll receive. However, you should not forget that the doctor employed by your boss or his insurance company is not your friend. His or her desire to get more business may encourage him/her to identify your injury symptoms as a preexisting condition or lower its gravity. For instance, it would be unreasonable to give the company's doctor your 10-year history of the times you had a minor backache or pain if he asks if you've ever had back issues before. You can treat him to your history if you've suffered a chronic condition or a significant injury in the past; if not, just say "no."
What if my boss has no workers' compensation insurance?
Apart from a few exceptions like independent contractors, domestic employers, and agricultural employers, the law requires that all employers should have workers' compensation insurance. However, if your employer has no workers' compensation insurance, call the worker compensation agency or the labor department of your state or a lawyer as soon as possible.
The chances are that your state will pay for your compensation benefits if your employer has no workers' compensation insurance. Also, you may be able to sue your employer for negligence if it carries no workers' compensation insurance when it should.
Can I get urgent treatment even if I lack funds or personal injury insurance coverage to cover the costs of my treatment?
Yes! You can get urgent medical treatment and delay the payment for the treatment until you receive your workers' compensation benefit with a Letter of Protection. All you need to do is to consult with your injury attorney who will prepare and send a LOP to your healthcare provider so that you can obtain the medical attention you need.
However, not all healthcare providers accept LOP, so your injury attorney may have to resolve to the stressful and time-consuming process of calling and researching various injury clinics around you to determine if they accept LOP.
Thankfully, with LOPNetwork, personal injury attorneys no longer need to waste time using the stressful and time-consuming process to determine which healthcare providers accept LOP. They can now quickly find injury clinics or professional healthcare providers that accept LOP across the nation based on their specialty, capability, and location. That means their clients can now get quick access to a convenient and professional LOP healthcare providers for a swift and quality medical treatment that they need.
Not registered on our network? Visit us at www.lopnetwork.com.