Important Workers’ Compensation Deadlines
As of the date of injury, you have two years to file a workers’ compensation claim. If you have fallen ill and believe it is due to an employment related exposure, you typically have two years from the date of diagnosis to file a claim. However, the recognized date of injury for an occupational disease claim may be mitigated by the circumstances of your exposure, disability, diagnosis, and treatment. The recognized date of injury may vary depending upon when you first became aware of your disease versus when you were first treated for your disease. Occupational disease claims are very fact specific, and can and do vary dramatically on a case by case basis. You should immediately consult an attorney for more information if you believe you have sustained an occupational exposure.
It is emphatically within your best interest to immediately report and document an industrial injury on the date it occurs. This demands immediately informing your employer, completing an accident report if applicable, requesting a copy of the completed accident report, and seeking immediate medical treatment. Please note that your responsibilities do not end at the job site. Once you have sought medical treatment, please take extra precaution to ensure that the healthcare providers are documenting a work related injury. This may demand repeatedly informing the nurses and physicians who examine you that you suffered an on-the-job injury.
The claim application process is thoroughly scrutinized by the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and self-insured employers alike. Proximity of reporting a claim to the Bureau/employer and the date of injury drastically increases an injured worker’s credibility and likelihood of attaining claim allowance. Claim application examiners, as well as the Industrial Commission, give significant deference to the initial medical records following the industrial injury. It is then critical that the examining health care providers document a work related injury.
In the event you are disabled due to your work injury, please take extra precaution to inform the initial healthcare providers of your injuries and the accompanying handicap that may prevent you from working. If you initially reported to a hospital emergency room or an urgent care facility, you may need to follow up with a new, BWC licensed practitioner.
Facilities that handle a high volume of patients are often reluctant to complete the necessary paper work certifying your current and active period of disability. A physician may only certify your disability from the date they first examined you. If the initial facility you reported to neglected to certify your current period of disability, you may be forfeiting a period of disability compensation you would otherwise be entitled to if you fail to immediately follow up with a licensed practitioner.
Chillicothe Workplace Injury Benefits Lawyers
If you are experiencing a difficult time attaining a licensed practitioner, please contact us for additional information.