If you’re injured at work, you deserve medical treatment as soon as possible. Your employer should provide compensation for your medical bills. Employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, which pays for injuries that occur on the job.
If you get injured at work, the first thing to do is to seek medical treatment. Your first priority is your healthcare. Go to the emergency room, urgent care or your doctor’s office, depending on the injury and severity. Report your injury to your employer as quickly as possible. Ideally, your employer will follow the laws of your state and help you work through the workers’ compensation claims to get your medical treatment covered and to get you back to work.
What If Your Employer Doesn’t Cooperate?
If your employer refuses to acknowledge your injury or discourage you from reporting it, you are not without recourse. Instead of going through your employer, you should contact the Department of Labor in your state to find the division that handles worker’s compensation claims. In most states, you have to report a claim to your employer or the Dept. of Labor within 30 days of your injury. You shouldn’t wait to deal with an injury at work.
Workers’ compensation are no-fault claims. Your employer cannot claim that you were negligent in your job as a reason not to pay your medical bills. Employers cannot retaliate against you for filing a claim with workers’ compensation or your state department of labor.
Keep a Paper Trail
When you report your claim to your employer, you should be given a form to fill out to report your injury to the insurance company that provides workers’ compensation benefits. If you aren’t given a form, that’s a red flag that you employer may not be willing to cooperate.
Whatever your employer does, it’s best to document what happens. Keep copies of everything you fill out for your employer. Send an email to follow-up if you aren’t given any documents to fill out. Keep copies of all of your medical bills and reports. Medical bills and loss of income can quickly add up. If you do need to hire a workers’ compensation attorney, you’ll want to show that your employer was uncooperative and didn’t pay the bills.
Stay Safe in the Workplace
If your employer has an unsafe workplace, you can contact the state Department of Labor to report it. If you have been injured on the job without getting workers’ compensation benefits, you may want to talk to an attorney who can help you find the best possible outcome for your situation.