Step By Step Guide To Filing Workers’ Comp Claims
When you face an injury related to your employment the results can be overwhelming, from the physical to financial upheaval. This is why workers are always advised to file for Workers’ Comp Claims immediately when they learn of the injury. The claim is not only meant for accidents but also illness that may develop due to various conditions in your place. What to consider before filing for the claim:
*The cause of the accident or illness: it is very important that you ensure the injury or illness is connected to your work. Some medical problems such as carpel tunnel syndrome make take some time to manifest but a medical expert can tell whether an illness is related to your job.
*Don’t delay: when you face an injury or illness it is recommended that you act immediately. Delaying can lead to complications and may put you at a disadvantage.
*Have some witnesses: if you are filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim due to an accident, ensure that you have some witness, if possible, to testify about the accident and also have exact details such as the
time, date and area of the accident.
This is a question that is usually asked by many victims of work related injuries. If entitled to benefits, the amount you will receive depends on your gross earnings, with the weekly compensation rate being calculated from the same. As there are different types of employment, full-time, part-time, seasonal, and even the length of time employed that are factors, there are different ways to calculate your weekly compensation rate. Also, if you receive compensation, then return to work in a light duty capacity, earning some wages, you may be entitled to partial compensation benefits. Each individual’s case is different and time sensitive.
Temporary Total Disability
If your injuries caused you to miss time from work, then you should be entitled to wage loss benefits, commonly referred to as Temporary Total Disability benefits. In some cases, your benefits can be settled in a lump sum amount, which will end your workers’ compensation claim.
Medical Only Benefits
In case of minor injuries where you do not miss any time from work, you may be compensated by just having the medical bills paid by your employer’s workers’ compensation carrier. Keep in mind that the workers’ compensation carrier will only be responsible for “reasonable, necessary, and causally related medical bills”. That is, they will not just pay for everything that you treat for, but the treatment must be related to the work injury, be reasonable and necessary for your condition to improve.
If your case does settle, it is usually by a one-time lump sum of cash, but could also settle through a structured settlement. The structured settlement is where the workers’ compensation carrier agrees to pay a specific amount of money over a certain period of time (like one year to ten years) depending on the agreed upon arrangement. In all cases, any workers’ compensation claim settlement must be approved by a Workers’ Compensation Judge.
It is very important to understand that it is your legal right to be compensated for an injury or illness related to your job, if you meet your burdens of proof, either initially with the workers’ compensation carrier, pursuant to their investigation, or before a Workers’ Compensation Judge. Therefore, if you feel that it is taking longer than it should to get action on your particular case, you can involve an attorney to help you through the workers’ compensation claims process. This way you will not only get faster, more knowledgeable services, but will also know where you stand regarding your claim, and ensure that you receive the correct amount of compensation that you are due.