A work related injury must be properly reported to the employer in order to be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits.
If the injury is not reported in accordance with the state laws or it is reported late, it will hurt your worker’s compensation claim.
Given below are the steps to report a work-related injury.
Assess The Situation and Act Accordingly
The first thing an employee must do after an accident has occurred is assess the situation. If the accident is a serious one and moving will put him at risk of further damage, he should wait for someone to help him. His co-worker or employer should call 911 in case immediate medical attention is required. The injured employee is advised not to act unless it is safe to do so. If the accident is less serious but still requires medical attention, he should be taken to the hospital.
In minor cases where the employee is not too injured to move around, he should report the accident to his nearest co-worker without delay. This is important since eyewitness accounts will give credibility to the employee’s accident report. If required, first aid treatment should be given onsite.
Reporting To The Employer
After the employee reports the accident to his co-workers, he must report it to his employer or manager immediately. He must not wait to see whether his injury improves over time.
Every state has deadlines for accident reports and if these are not met, it can result in termination of the employee’s benefits. The worker’s compensation amount will also be reduced depending on how late the report is. The employee should ask the employer for the accident report form, fill it out and keep a copy for himself for reference. In some states, a specific accident report form is not necessary and a written notice is accepted.
Make sure you give your employer details about,
- Name, address and contact information
- Location of the accident
- How the accident happened
- Time and date of the accident
- The nature of injury
- Body part affected by the injury
- Symptoms the employee is feeling even if it is something minor like a headache
While filling an accident form,
- Make sure you include accurate and relevant details of the accident. Try to recall the correct details without being too vague.
- Don’t exaggerate your symptoms or injury. If the insurance company or employer finds out that the doctor’s report doesn’t align with what you mentioned in your accident report, they can deny your worker’s compensation claim.
- If you don’t know exactly how the accident happened, just include details of what you know. Don’t make up fake information. If the insurance company finds out that you have lied in your report, your worker’s compensation claim will be denied immediately.
You should also file your worker’s compensation claim form and give it to your employer who will file it with the worker’s compensation agency. The claim should be filed as soon as possible in order to maximize the employee’s worker’s compensation benefits.
An experienced worker’s compensation lawyer will ensure that the employee submits all the relevant paperwork within deadlines. If you are from the Scranton area and want advice regarding your worker’s compensation benefits, we recommend consulting a good Scranton work comp lawyer.
You should also include the employer and insurance company’s name in the report. If any doctor has been consulted, his name should also be included in the report along with other relevant details.
In cases where an employee is too injured to fill an accident report, the employer or a trusted co-worker must fill it out.
Reporting To OSHA (Occupational Safety And Health Administration)
In case of serious workplace injuries where an employee dies, requires hospitalization or has severely damaged a body part, the employer must report to OSHA within 24 hours. In less severe cases, the deadline is extended to 7 days. The details required to be mentioned in the OSHA report includes,
- Name and contact information of the injured employee
- Date and time of the accident
- Location of the accident
- Description of the accident
If you have any doubts about the reporting process, seek the help of someone who is experienced. The sooner you submit your accident report, the sooner you can start receiving your benefits.
You can also check out Union Law Firm, they have represented union members all across the country and acted as a consultant and advisor on a number of issues concerning workers belonging to unions.