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Mistakes to avoid when handling a workers’ comp claim

On Behalf of | Jul 22, 2020 | Workers' Compensation |

Workers in New Jersey may file for workers’ compensation benefits when they are injured on the job. Companies, for their part, need to avoid certain mistakes when handling these claims. It all starts with reporting the claim. Employers should ensure that there is no delay in reporting the claim; that way, the investigation will be easier to conduct.

The victim’s supervisor, as well as any eyewitnesses to the incident, should report immediately and provide any information that might impact the claim. Employers should document every step of the investigation, too, writing and signing all statements, preserving evidence from the site of injury and taking pictures where necessary. They must also keep in touch with victims.

Employers are encouraged to have a modified return-to-work program so that victims may continue working, albeit at a reduced capacity, and not file a lost-time claim against them. If they have victims sign a medical release, this will speed up the obtaining of medical records and the compensability decision.

Some employers have little knowledge of the workers’ comp laws in their state, and this should be rectified. To avoid claims altogether, it’s essential for companies to hire only qualified workers and to train workers adequately on things like equipment use and hazard assessment. They must document all training courses passed and certifications obtained.

Victims, for their part, may want an attorney to tell them more about workers’ compensation law. Filing a workers’ comp claim may not be as hard as filing a personal injury claim since no one’s negligence needs to be established, but victims may still meet with opposition, requiring them to mount an appeal. An attorney may help with this and other steps.