Workers Compensation: What You Need to Know
Three Simple Steps to Making Certain Your Claim is Approved
Accidents happen when you least expect them. One minute you’re helping top the office Christmas tree, and the next you’ve fallen from your ladder, bruising and banging countless bones on the way down.
Your pride might tell you to brush off the incident – but don’t. Once an injury happens in the workplace, you have a limited window to take action.
According to Gayle McFadden, a paralegal with Whitehurst, Blackburn and Warren, knowing the proper course of action to take before an incident like this is crucial to making sure justice is served. The following steps, courtesy of WBW, will help guide your way.
Hire a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Across the country, workers’ compensation laws are designed to give injured employees time to heal so that they may return to work. Familiarizing yourself with state laws, as well as your employers policy regarding workers compensation, is critical. In Georgia, state law says “you are entitled to weekly income benefits if you have more than seven days of lost time due to an injury.” But did you know that your employer must provide you with a panel of at least six doctors? Or that your first check should be mailed to you within 21 days after the first day you missed work? According to Gayle, to appropriately navigate the nuances of the law, contacting your attorney following an incident should rank high on your to-do list.
Report Your Incident After immediately contacting medical attention and alerting loved ones, the second step you’ll need to take is filing an official report with your employer. “You only have 24 hours from the time of the incident to alert your employer to a potential injury,” explained Gayle. “Even if you aren’t certain how severe your injuries are yet, loop your employer in.” Reporting the incident protects you – the worker. That’s what WBW cares about.
Stay Connected After you’ve been injured, received medical attention, contacted your lawyer, and alerted your employer, staying in constant communication with your lawyer’s office is key. Gaps in communication can be detrimental to your claim. Something as simple as a change in phone number or address may make the difference in you receiving proper payments. “If someone’s phone got cut off, which happens on occasion, and I had to get them to a doctor’s appointment that was scheduled for that day or the next, it’s a huge problem,” said Gayle. “On more than one occasion I’ve had to go out and track someone down in person.” As long as WBW is connected with you, its team will guide you through your workers’ compensation claim. If you or someone you love have been injured at work, please contact the experts at WBW at (229) 226-216.