Workers’ compensation insurance is meant to cover you in case of any injuries you may suffer at work. You may think that if an injury is caused by your own mistake, you will get no compensation. However, that is not the case with workers’ comp. Even if a workplace injury is caused by your own mistake, you are still entitled to compensation as per South Carolina laws.
However, employers can sometimes reject workers’ compensation claims or raise objections for no fair reason. This is often simply an excuse to avoid paying the claim. In order to make sure that the employer approves the claim, it is important to follow the best practices listed below. Contact our South Carolina workers’ compensation attorneys today.
Get Medical Help
The first thing to do in the wake of a workplace injury is to get immediate medical help. Even if you believe your injury is not very serious, make sure you undergo a thorough medical examination. If the injury requires immediate attention, you can get medical help from any doctor. However, in order to qualify for workers’ compensation benefits, you may be required to see a doctor approved by your employer or the insurance company.
So after you have received initial medical attention, it is time to see the approved physician. Make sure you relate all the details surrounding the accident and the injury when you see the doctor. This means sharing details of any pain, physical or mental discomfort, or any other symptoms you may experience after the injury. Be as detailed as possible while sticking to the facts.
Get Medical Records
The physician you see after the injury may or may not recommend further tests to better understand the nature of your injury. In either case, the physician will then chart up medical records which carry the details of your workplace injury.
These medical records are an immensely important piece of documentation. They will be used in supporting your compensation claim and later in the court if your claim is not approved at the first step by your employer.
Report the Injury to Your Employer
South Carolina law requires you to report workplace injuries to the employer within 90 days of the injury. In general, it is best to notify your employer of the injury as soon as possible, preferably within a few days. However, the employer must be notified within 90 days in any case. If you fail to notify the employer within this time, you may lose your injury benefits for good. This is because the more you delay notifying the employer, the more your employer and other authorities are inclined to believe that your claim is not truthful.
File a Workers’ Compensation Claim
After you notify your employer, the employer may turn down your claim or fail to report it to the S.C. Workers’ Compensation Commission. When that is the case, you may not receive any benefits or receive only a limited amount of benefits. This is when you should seek the help of a qualified Greenwood, SC workers’ compensation attorney. An attorney will help you file a claim with the Commission on your own to seek the benefits you deserve. A workers’ compensation claim is typically filed by submitting a Form 50 or Form 52.
Request a Hearing
Even after you take your claim directly to the Workers’ Compensation Commission, your employer or the insurer may contest it. In such a case, you have the option of requesting a hearing before the Commission. At this hearing, you are required to present your arguments and the evidence to back your claim. It is advised that you have a lawyer with you when you request a hearing. The employer or insurer is also summoned to present their set of arguments in opposition to your claim. If your claim is still rejected at this stage, you still have higher levels where you can appeal the claim.
Hiring a Workers’ Compensation Attorney in Greenwood, SC
If you have been injured in a workplace injury in Greenwood, SC, you deserve compensatory benefits from your employer. However, if your employer fails to approve your claim or downplays it, it is important to take a legal approach to the claims process. Here at ASB Law Firm, we have been handling workers’ compensation claims for many years. Our workers’ compensation attorneys in Greenwood, SC specialize in negotiating a fair range of benefits for our clients. Contact us today to book a FREE consultation with our lawyers and discuss your case in a one-on-one session.