If you’ve suffered an injury at work, you may not know where to turn or how to start the workers’ compensation claims process. Your first step after an injury should be to get the medical attention you need to care for any serious injury or open wound, but after that, you’re going to want to file what’s known as a First Report of Injury. This kicks off the claims process and can lead to a successful injury payment, but how do you go about filing this form?
In most cases, you probably won’t even need to file the form, because it should be filed by your boss, manager or supervisor at your company. Under Minnesota law, it is the employer’s responsibility to file the FROI, but you also have some things you’ll want to do as well. For starters, it’s a good idea to ask to assist with filing out the FROI so that the report remains accurate. Also, you’ll want to write down the date and time you informed your supervisor about the injury, because the law states that they have 10 days from notification to submit the injury report.
Aside from the official copy, many injured workers find it helpful to write down their own version of events or get a copy of the FROI. This way, if you have to talk to a doctor, your attorney or the insurance company, you have a document that will ensure your story stays the same and you cover all the important facts. Finally, if you work multiple jobs, you’ll want to inform all your employers about your injury.
Once you have confirmation from your employer that the report has been filed, the ball is in the insurance company’s court. However, it doesn’t always go that smoothly. Sometimes your employer doesn’t think your injuries are serious and will refuse to file your FROI, while other times they aren’t the most organized and may forget to file. If you think either of these situations are possible, your best bet is to contact a workers’ compensation lawyer.
Contacting an attorney has a few important benefits when it comes to filing your FROI. First, they can make a note that your employer was unwilling or unable to file your FROI, which could help you if the case goes to trial, as it speaks to their ability to look out for the best interests of their employees. Next, attorney assistance is helpful because they can help you file a report that gives the perfect amount of information. Sometimes when employees or employers file the injury report, they include too much detail, which can actually work against your case, or too little detail, which allows the insurance company to deny the claim. An attorney knows what relevant information needs to be included in a FROI to put you in the best light with the insurance company.
Finally, there’s a chance that the insurance company wants to reach out to you to get more information about the incident or clarification about what happened. Again, it’s helpful to have an attorney because the insurance company is not on your side, and they’ll be looking for reasons to deny your claim. By speaking with a lawyer or letting them handle the communication, they’ll be able to help you avoid certain phrases or nuances that can hurt your claim.
A FROI should be handled by your employer, but there’s still plenty of action for you to take. If you’ve been injured and are at the beginning of the claims process, it’s in your best interest to contact a Minnesota workers’ compensation lawyer like Dean Margolis to ensure you are proceeding correctly. For more information, or to get help with your injury claim, reach out to his office by calling (952) 230-2700 today.