One of the most important things to do when you’ve been injured at work is to make sure the accident is reported. Many people don’t report accidents right away, which can lead to problems further down the line. The reason many people don’t report accidents is because there wasn’t any noticeable bodily harm or serious enough injuries to require immediate medical attention.
Even if your injury doesn’t appear to be very serious, it’s crucial you report your accident as soon as possible. If you haven’t reported your injury, your employer may deny you medical treatment and benefits for missed time from work. Always report your accident as soon as possible in order to avoid having to deal with these issues.
In addition to your employer denying you medical treatment and out of work benefits, the workers’ compensation insurance carrier will question why your employer didn’t report the accident as soon as the accident happened. Your private health insurance carrier also will not pay for treatment for work-related injuries. Also, if the accident isn’t filed immediately, your employer may deny the accident happened or claim that it took place outside of work. Many employers even impose 24-hour deadlines for reporting accidents, resulting in being suspended without pay or reprimanded if you miss the deadline.
In the event that you are injured from a mundane task, such as lifting heavy objects, but the injury doesn’t seem serious at the time, it’s still important that the accident is reported as soon as possible. The natural conclusion for many in this situation is to tough it out, not mentioning it to a supervisor unless it gets serious. However, waiting to talk to a supervisor about even the most minor of injuries is exactly where many people get into trouble.
Imagine the strain in your back from lifting a heavy box suddenly starts becoming more serious a few days or weeks later and you didn’t report your injury to your employer. In many cases, it’s not only too late to report the accident, but you may be without pay and without work while you recover from your injury, all while paying for medical treatment out of your own pocket.
Proper Reporting Procedure
Workers’ compensation claims are “no fault” claims, meaning any negligence that resulted in your work accident injury has no effect on your ability to receive the necessary compensation in order to recover from and continue supporting yourself during your injuries. The state of New Jersey and the federal government also have protections in place to protect you from any potential retaliation from the employer that you file a claim with.
If you have been injured, reporting the accident to your employer will only speed up the process of getting the medical treatment and compensation you need. In reporting your accident, your employer should fill out a detailed injury report with you to get you the help you need.
If your employer doesn’t ask you for further information or fill out any paperwork, take notice as this may be an indicator that they don’t intend to report the injury. With how expensive medical bills can easily become, you want to have all of the support you can possibly get.
What to Do if Your Employer Refuses to File Your Workers’ Comp Claim
It’s important to be aware that it’s up to your employer to report your accident to the Department of Labor. Because you can’t report your own injury yourself, you need to be committed to making sure your employer reports the accident. If they haven’t reported the accident and don’t plan on it, it’s important to take action immediately.
It may be your employers’ responsibility to file a workers’ compensation claim, but it’s up to you to ensure he or she does so. If your employer hasn’t filed your workers’ compensation form, reach out to the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, who will help you through the process of filing the correct forms (typically form WC-14). Due to the complexity of these situations, it’s important to also reach out to an injury attorney who will make sure that you’re covered.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits You’re Entitled to if You’re Injured in New Jersey
- Medical treatment provided by your employer
- Temporary disability benefits
- Monetary award based on the degree of permanent injury
If you’re late reporting an accident, you should still follow the recommendations listed. Injured workers are allowed up to 90 days to report an accident in New Jersey. Although many employers have much shorter deadlines, you still may be able to receive workers’ compensation benefits eventually. That being said, when an accident is not properly reported, you will face additional obstacles throughout the process.
Injured on the Job? Demand Justice Today.
If you’ve been injured in a workplace accident, it’s important that you contact a New Jersey injury lawyer. Demand justice for your injuries and contact our team of workers’ compensation and injury attorneys at Judd Shaw Injury Law™ at 732-888-8888 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our No Fee Guarantee means we only get paid if you get paid, so you don’t have to worry about consultation or retainer fees and can focus on what’s most important—your health.
Content edited by personal injury attorney Judd Shaw. From the beginning, Judd established a set of Core Values laying out the pursuit for excellence in client service. He is a regular host of the Working The Wow podcast, with the belief that providing an exceptional client experience is just as important as delivering a quality service or product. You can find us in Red Bank and Tom‘s River, New Jersey.