The purpose of this blog is to help individuals decide what to do and not to do immediately following an on the job injury/workers’ compensation injury.
1. Identify witnesses: I recently have had a number of cases where the insurance company denied the accident and it is important for you to get the individuals names, addresses and telephone numbers.
2. You need to immediately notify your employer of the accident. The law in Florida is clear that you must tell your supervisor within twenty-four hours after the accident that you have been injured. If you do not do this within 30 days, then your case is subject to being non-compensable.
3. You need to immediately seek medical opinions. If the insurance company does not send you to a doctor, you need to go the emergency room and tell them that you were injured on the job and what exactly is hurt. You need to tell the people exactly what body parts are affected because if you do not mention your injury; they will not accept it as an accident.
4. Find the workers compensation policy information. You need to locate the red poster with a female in a cast on her arm. This poster is typically in the break-room or the kitchen and will have the name of the insurance company that is responsible for the claim. You need to take down the name of the insurance company as well as the policy number, telephone number and address of the insurance company.
5. You are going to need to file a Notice of Injury if the insurance company does surface on your case. The Notice of Injury is the roadmap for your claim and it will have the particulars of your accident. There are going to be lines for your social security number, date of birth, claimants address, employers address and other information that is pertinent to your claim. Please retain a copy of this.
6. Please do not sign a release or anything that looks like you are giving up your claim. Many times the insurance company and the employer will tell you that they are going to give you money to go see a doctor but ask you to sign a release. Do not sign any releases until you contact an attorney.
7. It is a good idea to keep a written diary of what has happened to you. Your case may go to trial and it will be many months from now and you will forget the particulars. Please write down specific information in a note book and a time-line of the doctors you have seen and what the employer said to you during the immediate aftermath of an injury.
I hope this gives you a brief outline of what you should do after an accident and please contact me by email or by telephone if you have any problems concerning an on the job injury.