Filing a workers’ compensation claim: Take the right steps
Despite the precautions, workplace mishaps happen all the time. In Virginia, all employers are required to have workers’ compensation insurance. If you were injured on the job, the insurance company pays the benefits after a claim is filed. While the laws don’t require you to have an attorney for your workers’ compensation claim, you should seek legal representation to protect your rights. You can click here to get a free consultation with a top lawyer. For your help, here are the right steps to take after a workplace injury.
- Get medical attention immediately. If required, go to the ER or tell your employer you need immediate medical care. Always prioritize your treatment in such circumstances. In case you are unhappy with the first doctor, there is no harm in asking for a second opinion, and in some cases, these expenses will be covered by workers’ comp or health insurance.
- Notify your employer in writing. You should report your accident to your employer at the earliest. As per Virginia laws, you have 30 days to inform your employer, but do not wait. This will give your employer to take prompt action. Do not assume that the accident is a minor blip. You may discover injuries later, and if you don’t notify the company within 30 days, you may lose the right to seek benefits.
- Maintain a file. Ensure that you have a file pertaining to the workers’ compensation claim. The file should include all details, including the accident report, your medical bills, documents related to your treatment, prescriptions, and other things like your pay stubs for a year before the injury. The file will come in handy when you talk to the insurance company.
- Talk to a lawyer. If you have never handled a workers’ compensation claim or don’t know how to get your paperwork in place, consider hiring a lawyer. Top attorneys will happily evaluate the case and determine your eligibility for the benefits. They will also fight aggressively if the insurance company denies your claim.
Make sure that you don’t share your workers’ compensation claim with anyone. Don’t post anything on social media, and ensure that you exercise your right to file a form with the Commission, even when the insurance company pays the benefits. Your lawyer will further guide you on the dos and don’ts you must follow. Avoid the common mistakes that can otherwise lead to unexpected outcomes.