Missteps That May Hurt Your Chances of Recovering Workers' Compensation Benefits
Posted on behalf of Goldberg Finnegan, LLC on Sep 13, 2018 in Workers' Compensation
If you have sustained an injury or illness at work, filing a workers’ compensation claim may provide compensation for your medical bills and lost wages. Unfortunately, the claims process can be complicated and confusing, which is why workers often make mistakes along the way. These common mistakes can lead to your claim being denied or result in you receiving less compensation than you deserve.
Working with a skilled Silver Spring workers’ compensation lawyer can help you avoid these mistakes and get your claim approved. Our attorneys understand how important it is to obtain workers' compensation benefits after an injury to take care of your medical bills and ensure you have the income to support yourself while you are unable to work.
Failing to Report the Injury
A common question about workers' compensation in Maryland is: when should I report my injury?
If you suffer an injury at work, you should report it to your employer right away and make sure to do so in writing. This helps to show this is a serious situation. If you wait to report the injury, you are more likely to have problems recovering benefits. Your employer or the Maryland’s Workers’ Compensation Commission (WCC) may doubt that the injury occurred at work or downplay the severity of your injury and offer you less compensation than you deserve. You could also increase the risk that your claim will be denied.
Under Maryland law, you must inform your employer of accidents and work-related injuries within 10 days of the incident. If you suffer from an occupational illness, you must notify your employer within one year of discovering the connection between your work and the illness. If you do not file a claim within these time limits, you may lose your right to pursue workers’ compensation benefits.
After notifying your employer, you have 60 days from your injury date to file a claim with the WCC. You may still be allowed to file a claim after this deadline if you have a good reason why you were late. However, you cannot file a claim more than two years from the date of your injury.
Not Seeking Treatment
Failing to seek medical treatment for your workplace injury or illness as well as failing to follow doctor’s orders for treatment can put you at risk of having your workers’ compensation claim denied.
The purpose of workers’ compensation benefits is to help injured workers pay for their medical treatment and make up for lost income when they are unable to work. If you do not seek medical care, it may raise red flags. The WCC may view this negatively and feel you are not actually injured or that the injury is not that serious.
Failing to Keep Accurate Records
If you have suffered a workplace injury or illness, it is critical to your claim that you keep accurate and detailed records. Record the time you missed from work due to your condition as well as any and all expenses for your medical treatment. These records will help ensure you get paid the compensation you are entitled to.
Handling Your Claim Alone
The law does not require injured workers to pursue workers’ compensation with the help of an attorney. However, going through the process alone might be a bad idea. A Silver Spring workers’ compensation attorney can manage the process on your behalf, gathering appropriate evidence to prove your claim and protect your rights.
The attorneys at our firm understand the complexities of the process and what it takes to be successful. If your claim is denied, we can assist you through the appeals process.
Contact Our Workers’ Compensation Lawyers for Help
If you have suffered a workplace injury or illness, you may be able to file a workers’ compensation claim. Working with a trusted attorney can help you avoid the mistakes above that could lead to your claim being denied.
The workers’ compensation attorneys of Goldberg Finnegan will review your case and inform you of your legal options. Request a free, no obligation consultation today. There are no upfront fees and payment is only due if we recover compensation.