Common Mistakes Filing for Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ Compensation is a program created by state laws to provide income, medical, rehabilitation and, in extreme cases, death benefits to employees and dependents related to a work-related injury or illness.
When workers have received injuries on the job, they will most likely qualify for some form of workers’ compensation benefits. Through the workers’ compensation program they may receive help paying doctors bill and other medical bills due to a workplace injury. Benefits are available to help make up for lost wages due to missed days on the job.
If you sustain injuries or become ill at your workplace, it is crucial to follow the specific guidelines and procedures that have been mandated by the Board of Workers’ Compensation. Many claims can be denied due to a simple mistake or the failure to properly file a claim. Contacting a workers’ compensation attorney in Atlanta will assist you during this process and avoid making mistakes in filing the claim.
Failing to report a workplace injury
The Workers’ Compensation process cannot begin until you notify or report an injury to your employer. Failing to report an injury promptly will appear suspicious and may hurt your claim, or the benefits may get denied altogether. Many employees are fearful of reporting their injuries to their employer and believe that it may lead to disciplinary action. It is against the law for an employer to punish an employee for filing a claim. If you have been hurt or injured, it is imperative that you inform your supervisor as soon as possible, preferably in writing. Make a copy for yourself and tell them you are pursuing worker’s comp benefits.
Making mistakes on claim forms
During the workers’ comp claim process you will be required to complete a variety forms and gather a substantial amount of information. The most important thing for an injured employee to do is to meet all the deadlines and complete all the forms. Many claims are denied due to carelessness when submitting application forms. Check every form for accuracy and thoroughness.
Receiving Treatment From An Unapproved Doctor
It is highly unlikely that your physician is an approved doctor for workers’ comp hired by your employer for the purpose of workers’ comp claims. Instead of going to your general doctor after being hurt on the job, you will be required to see your employer’s approved physician or specialist. Seeking medical treatment from another doctor who is not authorized by your employer for workers’ comp may get your case denied.
Ignoring Doctor’s Orders
Once you seek treatment from your employer’s workers’ comp physician, it is important to follow any regimen and instructions given to you. The doctor may require you to see a specialist or to get physical therapy. If the physician does not perceive that you are following instructions, a report to the Workers’ Compensation Board may cause your benefits to get denied. Do not miss any appointments; you need to show that you want to get better.
Returning To Work Too Soon
Getting back to work as early as possible is the desire of most people. Workers who are forced to take time off from work to recover from injuries sometimes feel useless or insignificant and bored. Going back to work before you are able is a mistake. If you are not ready to return to your job, you could re-injure yourself, lose job performance, or make your injury worse. Likewise, if the doctor tells you to go back to work and you do not think you have recovered, or when returning to work and notice you are earning less, you need to contact a Workers’ Compensation Attorney.
You want to be particularly careful about returning to work too early, as sometimes, once you return to work, you are no longer eligible for benefits, even if you return to work only to find that your injury continues to prevent you from doing your job. You can prevent this by holding off returning to work as long as possible. Even still, some employees on workers’ compensation feel pressured to return to work because of their employer’s doctor’s recommendation. If you are being pressured to return to work and are unsure about your current medical condition or ability to perform your job, seek the counsel of a worker’s compensation right away.
Atlanta Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
An experienced Atlanta workers’ compensation attorney can help you get the compensation you deserve for your workplace injuries. You can rest assured that you will not miss out on the workers’ compensation benefits you deserve simply because of a simple misstep. A workers’ compensation lawyer in Atlanta can help you get back on your feet with the medical attention you need, the compensation you deserve, and missed wages that you have experienced because of your employer or workplace injury.