Workers Compensation Claim: Mistakes that Mess Them Up

By the time we usually meet with our workers compensation clients, they’ve usually already filed their workers compensation claim and have had it denied. We’re usually asked to clean up whatever mistakes they already made regarding their workers compensation claim. The problem with this is that some mistakes cannot be rectified. For example, if you refused to see a state- approved workers compensation doctor and, instead were treated by your primary physician, your medical bills will not be covered under workers comp. The only thing we can do is help you make sure that any future medical bills are covered by insisting that you see a state-approved doctor. Our Orlando workers compensation attorneys work hard to help fix some of the mistakes our clients have already made. We also do our best to make sure they don’t commit any further mistakes in the future. If you have a feeling that you may have done something to jeopardize your own workers compensation claim, you should call our office right away. You can always schedule your free consultation with one of our Orlando, Florida personal injury lawyers.

You Always Want to Report Your Injury to Management Immediately to Validate your Workers Compensation Claim

One of the first mistakes our clients make is they don’t report their accident or injury to management. They may tell their friends and coworkers about it, but they don’t actually report it to human resources. In order to have your workers compensation claim even considered by the insurance company, you must report it to your employer. Most companies have a very strict workplace accident policy that requires employees to fill out an accident or incident form when they suffer a workplace injury. If you don’t follow this policy, your claim could be denied.

In other cases, an employee waits too long to report their claim and it gets denied for untimely filing. What our Orlando workers compensation attorneys can do is appeal to the insurance carrier to approve your claim. Even if they agree to this though, they’re not going to backdate your claim to the original date of injury. Typically, they’ll only make your claim active from the date your attorney reaches out to them going forward.

Workers Compensation Claim

Make Sure You Aren’t Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol

Another big problem that you might run into is having your drug test come back positive. Most employers in Florida require any employee who claims they’ve suffered a workplace injury to take a drug test. This usually happens before you go out to get medical treatment. If your test comes back positive, your workers compensation claim will be denied. If you’re lucky and you work for a compassionate employer, they may offer to help you go to a rehabilitation center. But they certainly aren’t going to pay you benefits.

What some of our clients have told us is that they purposely waited to report their accident until the drugs were out of their system. The problem with this is that the longer you wait to report your claim, the easier it is for your lawyer to say something other than a workplace accident close your injuries.

Never Post About Your Workplace Accident or Injuries on Social Media

It seems like common sense, but you have to make sure you don’t post about your workers compensation claim online. People are so obsessed with social media these days, it seems hard to not post about something like a workplace accident. You may want to garner sympathy or shock from your friends. However, all this can do is raise suspicion from the insurance company and your employer. If they see comments about how you’re enjoying your “time off” or how you wanted to get “out of that place anyway”, it will destroy your workers compensation claim. It can also give rise to an investigation that could end up with you being ordered to pay back any medical bills that were covered as well as replacement wages you received.

You Must Be Seen and Treated by a State-Approved Workers Comp Doctor

Like it or not, you’re required to be treated by a state-approved workers compensation doctor in Florida. Every state has their own certification program for physicians who are qualified to treat workers comp cases. When you’re initially treated, you’ll be given a choice to choose from this list of doctors. In some cases, you don’t even get to choose – your employer or the insurance carrier will choose for you.

The last thing you want to do is see your own doctor instead of the one appointed to your case. Any treatment they offer you will not be covered by workers compensation. What will happen is your primary health insurance company will deny coverage because they know your injuries were related to a workplace accident. Since workers comp insurance won’t cover these medical bills, you’ll be left to pay them out of pocket.

You Cannot Work Anywhere Else While Out on Workers Compensation

It should go without saying, but you cannot work a second job while you’re out collecting workers compensation benefits. If you’re caught doing this, not only will your benefits terminate, but you’ll be ordered to pay back any benefits you’ve already received. While it is true that income from both jobs will be used to calculate your “average weekly wages”, that doesn’t mean you can work the second job while recovering from your workplace injuries.

Make Sure You Retain an Orlando Workers Compensation Attorney

The best thing you can do from the start is contact an Orlando workers compensation attorney. Once you report your accident to your employer, reach out to our office. We can schedule your free, initial consultation by phone if need be. You need to have someone in your corner before you embark on the workers compensation journey. You want to make sure you don’t make any costly mistakes and the best way to do that is to hire an attorney.

Contact our office as soon as possible after your workplace accident. Speak with someone in our office and schedule your free, initial consultation. Sit down with one of our Orlando, Florida personal injury lawyers so you can discuss your case. Make sure you’re upfront and honest about any mistakes you may have made. This is the only way your attorney can help you clean the up.

Since the initial consultation is free, you have nothing to lose.

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