Your Workers Compensation Claim: 3 Facts You Should Know
Have you recently suffered an injury while at work? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills and lost wages under current workers compensation laws. In order to collect these benefits, you will need to file a workers comp claim with your employer who will then pass this claim along to their insurance company. However, before you file a claim, there are a few facts that you should know.
Fact 1: Your Employer Cannot Refuse To Take Your Claim
In some cases, employers will try and discourage employees from filing a workers compensation claim by either stating that it has been too long since they suffered the injury or that they don't believe the injuries occurred at work. While it is true that these are facts which the insurance company may choose to challenge after your claim has been filed, they are matters of fact that will need to be officially challenged as part of the claims process. They are not reasons for rejecting your claim. In fact, there is no legal reason for your employer to refuse to accept your claim, even if they believe this claim will be denied.
Fact 2: You Don't Have To See The Doctor Your Employer Recommends
Many companies have a protocol in place for when an employee becomes injured on the job. In many cases, this protocol will include directing the employee to a specific doctor or clinic in order to be evaluated as soon as possible after the injury occurs. In some cases, employees may be lead to believe that they are required to visit this doctor in order to avoid paying any out-of-pocket medical expenses while their workers compensation claim is being processed. However, the truth is, you have the right to visit any doctor or hospital that you choose which accepts workers compensation patients. Just be sure to let them know that your injuries were suffered on the job so that you do not receive a bill in the mail for any services that you may receive.
Fact 3: You Can Appeal Any Decision That Is Made Regarding Your Claim
Many people are aware of the fact that there is an appeals process available to individuals who have their claims denied. However, some of these individuals will not realize that this appeals process is available any time a decision is made regarding your claim, even if this decision is ultimately to approve your claim. For instance, if you feel as though the benefits you are granted do not adequately reflect the severity of your injuries, you can challenge the amount of your benefits without giving up your right to receive these benefits if you lose your appeal.
When deciding to appeal a decision in you case, it is important to remember that your right to appeal will often come with a very short time limit. In order to ensure this time limit does not expire, you will need to file your appeal as quickly as possible after receiving notice of the questionable decision. You may also wish to contact a workers compensation lawyer at this point in order to help you prepare for your appeal and ultimately improve you chances of being successful.