Work-related injuries are a fact of life. Workers' Compensation benefits are available to nearly all workers who suffer on-the-job injuries. However, many times injured employees are reluctant to file a claim because employers will attempt to deprive injured employees of medical benefits and compensation to which they are entitled under the Alabama’s Workers’ Compensation Statutes. This is because it costs your employer money to provide benefits and compensation for your injuries.
Filing a Workers' Compensation claim is often times frustrating. Employers typically hide behind their workers' compensation insurance carrier to shield themselves from the claims. By not knowing the ins-and-outs of the worker’s compensation claim process, workers often end up receiving reduced compensation and benefit payments.
Further, injured workers are often put at risk and ordered to return to work too early (in effect ending compensation benefits) based on skewed medical opinions from doctors that have been chosen by the employer. You can take steps to protect yourself during the workers' compensation process by knowing what you must do immediately after you get hurt on the job:
If you are injured on the job, be sure to report your injury to your employer immediately (or as soon as you are reasonably able). Make sure your employer documents your injury by filling out a "First Report of Injury" for your accident. If you delay, your employer will most likely allege you were not injured at work. Most employers have a mandatory reporting policy regarding work injuries.
If you violate your employer’s reporting policy, they will try to deny your claim based on insufficient or untimely "notice" of your on-the-job injury. If at all possible, you should report your injury to your employer prior to seeking medical treatment. If not, seek medical treatment first then immediately report the injury to your employer as soon as you are able.
If you delay seeking medical treatment, your employer will likely dispute your condition as being attributable to your on-the-job injury or work related incident. Going to the doctor as soon as practical after your injury will help establish proof that your injury was in-fact work-related.
Finally, contact me for a free consultation. You should not talk to any employer or insurance adjuster without first getting legal consultation and representation. Rest assured, your employer will have both an insurance adjuster and a defense attorney working against you from the moment you report the injury.
Workers' Compensation laws can be convoluted and technical. It’s imperative that you know your legal rights and options prior to engaging in any discussions about your claim. You may be entitled to far more compensation than you think.
If you have been injured on-the-job, call me immediately. I will ensure you receive fair treatment throughout the legal process: