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Filing for Workers' Comp Benefits FAQ

Filing for Workers' Comp Benefits FAQ

If you have been injured on the job while performing work-related duties, you may be entitled to workers' comp benefits.

This article will answer some of the questions you may have about filing for workers' comp benefits.

With whom do I file my claim?

As soon after injury occurs as possible, notify your immediate supervisor. In addition, you'll need to contact your employers' workers' comp insurance carrier.

How long do I have to file a claim?

Although each state sets its own statute of limitations, injured workers usually have several years to file a claim. However, you should file your claim as soon as possible to limit the chances of its being denied.

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What records should I maintain when filing my claim?

You should talk to a workers' compensation attorney about records that are relevant to your case. In general, however, you will want to maintain thorough records of your medical condition and treatment, your employer's workers' comp insurance carrier, your salary amount, personal performance reviews, your employee handbook, correspondence related to your claim and any details about the accident that caused your injury. You will also want to have the contact information for the manager you notified at the time of your injury.

What if my claim is denied?

If your claim is denied, you should contact a knowledgeable workers' compensation lawyer. You should also take swift action to file an application for an administrative hearing with your state's workers' comp board.

What kind of benefits can I receive?

Although types of benefits differ from state to state, the following benefits are commonly provided to injured workers:

  • Compensation for medical treatment
  • Temporary disability benefits to at least partially compensate you for lost wages
  • Permanent disability benefits to at least partially compensate you for lost wages
  • Vocational rehabilitation
  • Death benefits
  • Educational assistance

How long does it take to receive benefits?

If your workers' comp claim is approved, you should begin receiving benefits shortly after the workers' comp insurer receives notice of your claim, investigates the incident and determines your eligibility.

Whom do I receive compensation from?

Your employer's workers' compensation insurance company will provide you with your workers' comp benefits.

Does my employer have to have workers' comp insurance?

Although workers' comp laws vary from state to state, most employers must have workers' comp insurance. However, sometimes exceptions are made for companies with very few employees.

Can I file for workers' comp benefits and sue my employer?

Usually, you cannot. The workers' compensation system is intended to compensate injured workers while shielding employers from litigation. However, you may be able to sue a third party that contributed to your injuries.