When you are injured or you suffer an illness, the employer should be notified of it as soon as possible. If medical attention is necessary, that should also be sought immediately and you do not need to wait until your claim is approved to seek this. Failing to make a report of the injury within a period of 90 days can mean that you are ineligible for benefits. You will also need to give notice to your employer within 90 days in a repetitive trauma case, from the time that you discover the condition, such as tendonitis. There are 90 days to make the report but you actually have two years to file the claim for benefits. When a worker is killed on the job, their parents or dependents should file the claim within a period of two years, as well.
In order to file the claim you will need to submit Form 50 or Form 52 with the Commission. It may be necessary for you to file in the event that your employer denies the injury was a result of the accident, if you think you didn't get all of the benefits that you should have or if they do not report that the accident occurred. It is important to make sure that you stick to all deadlines and that you properly fill out and file anything needed in the case. An error during the filing process can set you back and prevent you from getting the full benefits that you are owed.
The medical benefits that you are entitled to through workers' compensation include any necessary medical treatment that can lessen the disability that you face. This may include surgery, prosthetics, prescriptions, hospitalization or medical supplies. When you are pursuing medical attention, there will be a designated doctor that is covered. They may be chosen by the insurance company or your boss.
Additional benefits can include lost wages when you are unable to work as a result of the injury or illness. You will have to wait a period of seven days before being able to seek this option. Once the seven days have passed, then you will receive payment from the insurance representative. The first seven days that you were out of work will only be compensated if you end up being out of work over 14 days. Benefits can end when your doctor releases you to return to work, unless you still have restrictions or are performing light duty. When you do file or if your claim has been denied, working with an attorney can increase the likelihood of recovering compensation. Call our office to set up an appointment with our Columbia workers' compensation attorney for guidance and representation in your case.