Getting injured on the job can be a real pain — both physically and mentally — and that’s one reason why Workers Compensation exists.
What is workers comp? It’s insurance that pays medical bills, lost wages, and rehab costs for employees who are injured on the job or become ill because of factors at work. All employers are required to carry workers comp coverage.
Here are some of the things that workers comp might pay for:
- Medical care (care that’s considered “reasonable and necessary”)
- Disability benefits (these can be either temporary or permanent)
- “Catastrophic injury” payments
- Job training if you’re unable to perform your job duties after the injury
- Death benefits for family members
But what happens if you caused the accident in which you were injured? Does that impact your ability to file a workers compensation claim?
In short, no. If the accident happened while you were on the job, you are eligible to file a claim (with certain exceptions).
In Louisiana, you have to report your injury to your employer within 30 days. Failure to report the injury in a timely fashion can result in a denial of workers comp benefits. It’s important that you notify your boss as soon as possible.
You have to tell your employer in writing and include the following information:
- Where your injury occurred
- What happened
- The parts of your body that are hurt
- When it happened
After you notify your boss in writing, you should be able to choose your own doctor and seek treatment, according to state law.
Following your written notification, expect to hear from a workers comp investigator, who will review the following:
- Medical records
- Work experience, background and education
They’ll also likely send you for further evaluations by other medical professionals.
Sometimes, workers compensation will deny your claim, but you have the right to appeal.
If they deny your medical claims, you have one year from the date of injury to appeal the denial. If you’re appealing their denial of lost wages, you have to file within a year of your last payment from your employer.
Just like any other insurance claim, dealing with workers compensation insurance can often be complicated — and they don’t always have your best interest in mind. That’s why it’s a good idea to hire a workers comp attorney to help you with your case early on to make sure that there is someone looking out for you.
Contact the Stanley-Wallace Law today for help.