For small business owners, one of the best ways to avoid becoming entangled in a workers’ compensation issue is to look at it from the employee’s point of view. Ensure that your employees know what to do in the event of a workplace injury, and ensure they have easy and efficient access to the necessary resources to file their claim.
If an employee is injured at work, it is probably in their best interest to file a workers’ compensation claim. Workers’ compensation pays for medical care, rehabilitation, and even some wage replacement if the employee has to miss work. However, to receive these benefits, the claim must be filed promptly in accordance with your state’s workers compensation procedures.
There are some important steps to take immediately after being injured that employees should be aware of. As soon as an on the job injury takes place, it should be reported immediately to a supervisor (in writing if possible). Some states require that notice of an injury be made in writing to a supervisor, while others allow a verbal notice. To be on the safe side, employees should report all on the job injuries to a supervisor in writing.
The first step in filing a claim is to notify the employer. The employer is required to provide an employee with a claim form immediately upon hearing about the incident. Until this claim form is completed, the employer is under no obligation to provide any workers compensation benefits. Since some states have a short filing deadline, the employee should give notice and file a claim as soon as possible. The time limit to file a claim can range from two years to a few days depending on the state.
Finally, once notice of the injury has been delivered to a supervisor, the employee should be encouraged to seek immediate medical care.
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