You could be injured any time on the job and have your income affected. Worker's compensation benefits will help protect your income. But you need to be prepared for the process and have taken the right steps up to and following the time of the accident. Here are some of the common reasons that a claim will be denied and how to avoid these issues.
1. The paperwork is not filled out or submitted correctly.
A simple mistake, such as entering a wrong birth date for yourself, will quickly get the claim denied. The first step you should take when ready to file a claim is to get the help of a workers compensation attorney. They will make sure that all of the paperwork is completed properly and submitted within the expected time frames.
2. Failure to report all on-the-job injuries promptly.
Report all injuries on the job to your employer promptly so they become a part of your permanent employment record. These records are reviewed by the insurance company when they've received your claim. If you delay reporting injuries, the insurance company will question how serious you are about getting hurt on the job.
3. Lack of witnesses for the insurance company to interview.
Get the names and contact information for anyone in or near the area when the accident and injury occurred. The insurance company uses witness testimony to authenticate your accident. If you can't produce witnesses to the accident, the insurance company must take your word about the accident, which may result in a denial of benefits.
4. Failure to be examined after an accident.
If you don't get an injury looked at by a doctor promptly, the insurance company will again question how serious the injury was. See your doctor or company health services personnel as soon as you can after the accident. Follow any treatment recommendations, as well. If you fail to follow up on treatment, you'll risk your benefits claim being denied.
5. You tell an inconsistent story about the accident to the insurance company.
Any interactions you have with the insurance company should match what's in the company records and the notes of any healthcare providers that you saw for the injury. If what you tell the insurance company differs from the other documentation, your claim may be denied based on the lack of corroboration of your statements.
Your worker's compensation lawyer will work with you so you understand what to say during your interview with the insurance company and how to present the information. This includes:
- stating accurate dates and times for the injuries, examinations and any treatment
- making it clear that all of the injuries happened while you were on the job
For more information, contact firms like Lovett Schefrin Harnett.