When you want to know why your car is making that weird sound, you turn to a mechanic, and when you want to sell your home, you turn to a realtor, so it only makes sense that when you suffer an injury on the job that you turn to a workers’ compensation lawyer. When you need advice, you turn to a professional, so we thought it would be beneficial if we shared a few tips for managing your work injury claim from professionals who have been in the industry for decades. Here’s are five tips we share with every client.
Tips From A Work Comp Lawyer
If you want to ensure that you not only earn a compensation award, but maximize the amount, here’s what you need to do:
1. Report The Injury Right Away – Unless you require immediate medical attention, the first thing you should do after suffering an on-the-job injury is to report the incident to your supervisor. The sooner you report the accident, the fresher the details are in your mind, and the easier it will be to explain exactly what happened. If you wait a few days and the details get foggy, the insurance company may deny your claim based on inconsistencies with your story. There are also reporting deadlines to meet, so if you wait too long to report your injury, you may be ineligible to get compensation. Report the injury right away, and be sure to obtain a copy of the First Report of Injury form from your employer.
2. Contact A Lawyer – The next thing you should do is to contact a workers’ compensation lawyer. Aside from being able to help with all the paperwork, we can ensure that you get a fair and thorough medical assessment. Far too often employees get medical evaluations from employer-picked physicians, and sometimes they don’t give you a fair evaluation. We can direct you to doctors who specialize in evaluating your specific type of injury to ensure a problem doesn’t get overlooked and you get an accurate diagnosis and disability rating. There are plenty of other helpful things a lawyer can do, but talking to them before getting medical attention (again, unless it’s an emergency), is important.
3. Independent Medical Exam – Once you’ve spoken with a lawyer, the next thing you’ll want to do is to get an evaluation from one of your lawyer-recommended physicians. Be open and honest about the extent of your injuries, how the accident happened and what type of physical work you perform on the job. This will help the doctor understand what’s going on and how the injuries could impact your ability to safely perform your job.
4. Make Written Records – Another tip that is extremely helpful for injured workers and their lawyers is to have the injured party keep written records of everything pertaining to their injury and claim. Write down your recollection of the accident as soon as possible so you have all the details straight, and keep written records of phone calls or conversations you had with your employer or the insurance company following your injury. All of this can help to establish a clear timeline and ensure nothing slips through the cracks. Small details can make a big difference in the success of your case, so keeping detailed records and copies is essential.
5. Follow Through – Finally, follow through with all your obligations on your end. If you need to call your lawyer back, call them back. If you need to show up to a mediation session, get there early. If a form needs to be filled out, fill it out or make sure your lawyer takes care of it. Again, insurance companies will look for any possible reason to deny or limit your claim, so don’t play into their hands. If you need advice or are unsure of your next step, talk to your lawyer. We’ll point you in the right direction.
For more tips, or to talk to a workers’ compensation lawyer about your case, reach out to Margolis Law Firm today.