Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Were you seriously hurt at work and are now confused about what you should do next? The state of Massachusetts has a workers’ compensation act that is put in place to help protect workers who are hurt, killed, or diagnosed with an illness because of their job. Here is what you should know when it comes to filing a workers’ compensation claim in Massachusetts.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim | Notifying Your Employer
If you’re hurt on the job, let your manager or boss know right away. It doesn’t matter if you believe that the injury is minor. Minor injuries can get worse. If you wait, it can be difficult (and sometimes even impossible) to prove that you were hurt on the job.
Get medical attention as soon as possible. Your employer or their workers’ compensation insurer may require you to see their doctor for the first visit. After that, you may see your own doctor. Just remember to ask your doctor to file through workers’ compensation instead of through your health insurance. If you do pay out of pocket for anything, make sure that you keep proof of those payments.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim | Gather Evidence
Keep good notes of what happened. You’ve already learned that you should report the accident to your employer. Make sure that you keep a copy of that report or letter. If you’re asked to sign anything, even if it is just an accident report, make sure that you get a copy of it. Write down the names of anyone that witnessed what happened. Write a summary of how your symptoms are affecting you every day and remember to put a date with every entry when you write it. If you are a union member, make sure that you get into contact with your union rep and tell them what happened.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim | Important Information
As an injured worker, there is certain information that you’ll need to file your claim. You may also need this information if your claim is denied. Keep track of:
- The date that your injury or illness happened. If you’re a family member filing because of an on-the-job death, write down the date the injury or illness happened and the date of death.
- The first day of work you missed and the fifth day of work you missed. These dates do not have to be consecutive.
- The name of the insurance carrier your employer uses for workers’ compensation.
- A list of your injuries and the parts of your body that are affected.
- The type of benefits you believe you need.
- The amount of time you’ll be out of work, if you know.
- The date you first went to the doctor.
- The name of your current treating doctor.
You’ll also want to have copies of unpaid medical bills, medical reports, accident reports, witness statements, and witness names.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim | Hire an Attorney
Talk to a workers’ compensation lawyer about your rights. While the purpose of the workers’ compensation act is to protect you, and employers are required by law to have this insurance, that doesn’t mean that the insurance company will treat you in a way that is fair or equitable. A lawyer experienced in handling the Massachusetts workers’ compensation claims process can be highly beneficial. A lawyer can explain your rights to you in regards to workers’ compensation and the FMLA.
If you have been injured on the job and are interested in filing a workers’ compensation claim, please contact our Lowell workers’ compensation lawyer today to schedule a free consultation.