Here’s how to apply for worker’s compensation if you’ve suffered a work-related injury or illness.
1. Report your work-related injury immediately
The first thing you can do to improve your chances of getting workers comp is to notify your employer immediately you get sick or injured.
Most HR experts suggest you do it within 48 hours of injury. But you have a 14-day window to make your report.
The earlier you forward your workers’ comp request in writing, the better. Your employer needs enough time to report your injury to their insurance company.
These details are also required by the New Jersey Division of Workers. The organization requires employers to file a First Report of Injury with them within 21 days of its occurrence.
If you file your claim late, your employer may not have time to forward it to these organizations.
You should also keep a copy of the filed claim in writing for future reference. It will come in handy in case of a dispute.
2. Get a medical checkup
Get a checkup at your employer’s hospital of choice to ascertain the extent of your injuries.
This will give them further evidence of your injury to prove your claims.
Ensure you include any pain or discomfort you started feeling after the work-related injury or illness. That includes any nagging headaches, joint pains, or unexplained dizziness and other invisible injuries.
Reporting these facts will help you get all the compensation you deserve, especially if these issues worsen in the future.
Any records of emergency treatment, such as going to the emergency department for urgent medical care, should also be reported to the employer.
3. Secure immediate benefits
There are immediate benefits that you should get after reporting a work injury. Most employers provide employees with these benefits once they submit their workers compensation claim.
An example is Temporary Total Disability which is given to workers who cannot work for more than a week after a work-related injury or illness.
You may also get medical benefits to pay for your ongoing medical expenses while you wait for your claim to be accepted.
In case you are not sure how to go about it, ask for legal advice in NJ to help you identify them and give you a strategy for getting them.
These employment lawyers have experience in worker’s compensation cases and can increase your chances of getting what you deserve.
4. Wait for a response from your employer
You must take care of yourself as you wait for your workers compensation to come through.
Avoid doing anything strenuous that may jeopardize your health, such as heavy lifting.
You may get an additional injury or worsen the previous one making it hard for authorities to honor your compensation request.
These additional problems can make your original claim look falsified, especially if you are requested to go for another medical checkup.
It’s also important to note that insurance investigators may observe you to ascertain injury as they certify your claim.
If the investigators get evidence of you working when you are supposed to be injured, it would be detrimental to your job. You would also lose any chances of getting your compensation claim accepted.
So, avoid doing anything that may cause authorities to reject your workers compensation.
How to avoid injury at work as an older employee
As an employee over 50 years of age, you may have a more challenging time getting your compensation approved.
This is because the injury cost for employees in at-risk groups attract higher charges for employers than those of younger employees.
The length of disability after injury also increases the older you get.
It’s a good idea for at-risk employees such as those over the age of 50 to reduce their chances of getting injured at work. Here’s what you can do;
- Apply for low-risk work opportunities
Avoid physically demanding and high-risk positions such as those in construction.
Only apply for, or take positions that do not expose you to injury, such as desk and training jobs.
These jobs are ideal for older people because they have years of experience in their chosen field.
Many companies are always looking to hire experienced people to train new employees or mentor existing ones.
- Opt for jobs with a flexible work schedule
Some companies offer older workers a flexible schedule and remote-working opportunities.
These kinds of jobs are ideal for protecting yourself from suffering a work-related injury or ailment.
Flexible schedules have less fatigue, less commutes and less stress. Flexible work opportunities also give you the leeway to concentrate on family and to pursue other interests.
Final thoughts on compensation claims for older employees
This is just a bit of information on workers compensation for people over 50 years and above. If you enjoy working after your retirement age, you now know how important it is to secure all your benefits.
We’ve also given you a few tips on how to pursue workers’ compensation in New Jersey and the best jobs to choose to reduce your risk of suffering work-related injuries or illnesses.
Use our suggestions above to get workers compensation incase of a work injury.
Author : Kelly Hanks