When you hear the phrase “injured on the job”, you probably think of workers on a construction site or some other job where there is a higher risk of injury. But workplace injuries happen everywhere, from a slip and fall at an office to straining your back at a loading dock.
No matter where or how you were injured at work, getting the ball rolling on a workers’ compensation claim should be at the top of your mind. The five steps below will guide you through the process.
1. Let Your Employer Know
Immediately after your injury, you need to report it to your employer. Each state has a certain time limit for notifying your employer of a work injury. It can be from only a few days after the incident to a year after, so act promptly. Also, the more time that passes between the date of the incident to you reporting raises a red flag and can hurt your claim.
2. File a Workers’ Compensation Claim
After you let your employer know about your injury, they will give you forms to fill out. Your employer will then submit them to their insurance company, marking the beginning of your workers’ compensation claim. Depending on your state’s rules, you or your employer may also need to submit paperwork to the state workers’ compensation agency.
3. Seek Medical Attention
It’s also important that you seek medical attention promptly. Depending on the severity of the injury, you can head to an emergency room, urgent care, or make an appointment with your provider. Your state may have rules for getting medical attention, so look into it.
4. Be Aware of Filing Deadlines
As we’ve already hinted, know when your state’s deadlines are for filing paperwork. The filing deadlines differ state to state, so be certain that you’re looking at your state’s information when you perform your research.
5. Hire a Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Hiring an attorney is an optional step, but if you’re looking for an expert to guide you through the workers’ compensation process, it’s highly advisable.