Getting The Most Out Of Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
The following article will provide some tips for getting the most out of your workers’ compensation claim.
- Immediately report your injury. The first thing you should do after a work injury is immediately report it to your employer. Waiting too long to report may result in you not being able to file a workers’ compensation claim.
- Seek medical treatment. You should seek medical treatment as soon as possible after your injury. This will ensure that your injuries are properly documented. If you delay in seeking medical treatment, the insurance company could argue that your injuries weren’t as serious as you alleged.
- Make sure you are prepared for any independent medical examinations. Insurance companies will often hire doctors to perform an independent medical examination (IME) and issue a report. This report summarizes the doctor’s opinion on your diagnoses, work restrictions, and the relationship between your injury and your work. If you are scheduled for an IME, you must attend the appointment (or risk termination of your workers’ compensation benefits). It’s important to prepare for the IME by thoroughly reviewing your medical records and anticipating any tricky questions that may come from the IME doctor.
- Beware of private investigator tactics. If the insurance company questions your credibility, it might hire a private investigator to follow you around. This investigator will watch you at home and in public places in the hopes of catching you doing something that contradicts the details of your claim. If you believe that you are under surveillance, you should consider asking a workers’ compensation attorney about how you can minimize the impact of surveillance footage.
- Maintain detailed records. You should always keep copies of any paperwork related to your workers’ compensation claim (such as work restrictions, letters from your employer or the insurance company, and completed forms). These records are essential for ensuring that your claim is properly approved and paid.
- Make sure you attend all legal proceedings and appointments. Unless you have a workers’ compensation attorney representing you, you are required to attend every legal meeting or court date during an appeal (such as mediation, scheduling conferences, and hearings). If you do not appear at a scheduled legal appointment, you risk losing some or all of your benefits. If you are not represented by an attorney and you have to miss an appointment, it should be for a good reason and you should notify the insurance company and the state agency beforehand.
- Consider hiring a workers’ compensation attorney. You might need to consider hiring a workers’ compensation attorney if the insurance company reduces or denies your benefits; makes a settlement offer; or ignores your claim or your requests for information. An attorney can properly value your claim, negotiate with the insurance company, and represent you in an appeal.
Do You Have Questions About The Workers’ Compensation Process? Speak To A Personal Injury Attorney Today.
If you have additional questions regarding the workers’ compensation process, Connolly Injury Law can help. Our Chicago workers’ compensation attorney is ready to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have about filing a personal injury lawsuit.