Legal Guide

Mistakes That May Hurt Your Chances of Recovering Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Sustaining illness or injuries at work can come with various expenses like medical bills and lost wages. That is why the law provides for compensation benefits to help you recover the losses. However, the benefits never come easily. The process is tedious and needs various paperwork. That is why most employees end up making mistakes while looking to recover the benefits.

The mistakes can lead to either denial of the request or receiving lesser compensation. That is why you need a worker’s compensation lawyer who understands the process and can handle everything on your behalf. 

Some of these common mistakes when looking to recover the worker’s compensation benefits include;

  • Not reporting the injury 

Reporting the injury immediately it happens or you realize it is the first step towards getting any compensation benefits. Only by notifying the employer can they know of the occurrence then plan for your compensation. However, reporting later, the employer can likely downplay the impact of the injury or claim the injury was not as a result of you working. Therefore you end up losing the compensation or receiving a smaller amount if any.

Most states provide that you need to inform the employer of work-related accidents within 10days of occurrence. For occupational illness, you have within a year of discovering it to report to the employer. You then have a limited time to file a case after notifying the employer.

  • Failure to seek treatment

Failure to seek medical care is one of the easiest ways to lose your compensation. The employer relies on your medical treatment to establish the exact cause of your injury. Therefore by not seeking treatment, it’s difficult to establish if you are injured and its extent. Other than the compensation you need medical attention to help you recover quickly and return to gaining income. Otherwise, you risk struggling with long-term conditions that will need money for care yet you have no compensation.

  • Failure to keep accurate records 

Seeking medical attention is not enough when looking for the worker’s compensation benefit, you need proper records to back up your claims. You have to detail the extent of your injuries and the doctor’s prescriptions. 

Apart from the medical-related documents, you also have to keep records of the time of the accident occurrence, the days you have missed work, and all the expenses related to the accident.

  • Handling your claim alone 

The other mistake when pursuing your worker’s compensation benefit is to represent yourself during the claim. While the lawyer does not need you to have an attorney, you lower the chances of getting the compensation. Most employers have experienced lawyers who will ensure you get the least possible compensation. 

You need an attorney to help collect and provide evidence for every claim. The lawyer understands all the legal provisions and will file your case at the right time using the right procedure. Also, unlike you who might be injured and have limited time to collect evidence, the lawyer has all the time to work on your case. 

Look for an experienced worker’s compensation to represent you for the worker’s compensation benefits claim to get the amount you deserve. 

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