When an Illinois area resident goes to work each day they don’t expect they will be facing an unexpected injury. Although rare, any job can result in a person becoming unexpectedly injured. Workers’ compensation benefits are for those who are injured on the job and can help cover medical expenses and lost wages. But before a person files for workers’ compensation, they should be aware of the mistakes that can be made.
Didn’t report injury immediately
If a worker does not immediately report their injury, then it may be assumed that they were not really injured. In Illinois, an employee has 45 days to report a work-related injury to their employer in writing. If they fail to do so they can be disqualified for benefits.
Accident report doesn’t match medical findings
Employees unfamiliar with the process often do not appreciate the importance of providing their medical providers an accurate, consistent history of their injury. If the statement an employee makes regarding their on-the-job accident does not match a medical exam history, an employer will often use that inconsistency to argue the injury did not occur at work or is not serious. It is important that an employee inform their medical provider an accident history which is consistent with what happened at work.
Drug or alcohol use indicated in medical exam
If a medical test indicates that an employee was impaired at the time of their injury their workers’ compensation claim may be denied.
Sought workers’ compensation benefits after being laid off or terminated
Employees often incorrectly conclude they are not entitled to workers’ compensation after being laid off or terminated. While filing for workers’ compensation benefits after being laid off or terminated may cause an employer’s insurance company to view the filing to be motivated by revenge, a claim is not prohibited merely because it was filed after termination.
A person who is injured on the job should seek the advice of a legal professional who is skilled in workers’ compensation as soon as possible after the unexpected injury. They can make sure their client receives the benefits they deserve for their unexpected injury.