The workers’ compensation process can be confusing and complicated, especially after a severe work-related injury. Here’s what you can expect in terms of a general timeline for the typical workers’ compensation claim.
When you suffer a work-related injury, you must go through several steps to claim worker’s compensation benefits, as follows.
- Report your work-related injury. You must report your injury to your supervisor within 30 days of the injury to qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.
- If your employer voluntarily pays your workers’ compensation claim, you can receive one or more of the following benefits:
- Your employer will arrange for you to receive medical care. Your employer can choose the physician or facility to provide you with medical treatment at no cost to you. However, suppose your employer fails to provide you with reasonable and necessary medical care on an emergency basis or within seven days of your injury. In that case, you can choose a physician to get medical care at the employer’s expense.
- You can receive compensation if you have out-of-pocket expenses for meals, lodging, and actual mileage related to an authorized medical examination.
- If you are off for more than three days, you may qualify for Temporary Total Disability (TTD) benefits. If you receive TTD benefits, you will receive benefits equal to 70% of your average weekly wage for a maximum of 156 weeks, which can be extended in some circumstances.
- If you suffer a permanent injury, you may qualify for Permanent Partial Impairment (PPI) or Permanent Total Disability (PTD) benefits. These benefits depend on the nature and severity of your disability and whether it prevents you from working permanently.
- Vocational rehabilitation and job training services may be available to restore you to gainful employment.
- Lump sum benefits are available for severe and permanent disfigurement.
- Death benefits are available for your surviving dependents.
- If your employer denies your workers’ compensation claim, you must file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits with the Workers’ Compensation Commission. You have two years from the date of injury, the date of any compensation or payment instead of compensation, or the last date of authorized medical care to file your claim.
- You or your employer may engage in discovery or getting evidence about your injury, your medical condition, and your ability to work. Standard discovery techniques may include taking your deposition, which allows the attorney for the insurance company to ask you questions about your claim. Your employer also may arrange for you to attend an independent medical examination to get another opinion about your injury.
- You can request mediation, or the Court may order mediation to resolve your dispute. The Counselor Program handles the mediation of workers’ compensation cases.
- You can request that your case be set for trial before the Workers’ Compensation Commission. A judge will hear evidence, including witness testimony, from you and your employer and decide if you are owed any workers’ compensation benefits under state law.
Contact Armstrong & Vaught, P.L.C. Today for Help
We assist injured workers with all their workers’ compensation insurance and related legal needs. Call us today at (918) 582-2500 or visit our website to learn more about the services that we can offer you.