What should I do if I am involved in a work related accident?
Immediately notify a supervisor or your employer that you were injured while working and complete a written accident report. If you do not give your employer notice of the accident within 1 month, you may lose your right to benefits. If necessary, seek medical attention and inform the doctor or hospital that you injuries occurred at work.
Can I recover Workers Compensation benefits if I was paid off the books?
Workers who are paid off-the-books are entitled to Workers Compensation benefits. Unfortunately, off-the-books workers who have work related accidents are frequently victimized by their employers. Typically, employers tell workers not to file a Workers Compensation claim and not to tell the doctor or hospital that the injuries occurred at work. If you are paid off-the-books, you should keep a record of your earnings. By law, you may be required to file income tax returns.
Can I recover Workers Compensation benefits if I am an undocumented worker or illegal immigrant?
You are entitled to Workers Compensation benefits regardless of your immigration status.
Who will pay my medical bills?
You must inform the doctor or hospital that your injuries occurred while you were working and that the bills will be paid by your employers Workers Compensation insurance company. Your employer is required by law to provide you with information about the Workers Compensation insurance company.
Who will pay my lost wages?
If you cannot work due to a work related accident, you may be entitled to collect payments from your employers Workers Compensation insurance company. The amount of your payments depends upon the level of your disability and the amount you were paid by your employer before the accident. In order to receive payments, your doctor must indicate that you have an ongoing disability every 90 days. In addition, you may be required to actively search for a new job if you are partially disabled.
Will I be able to start a lawsuit as well?
Generally, if your employer has Workers Compensation insurance, you cannot sue your employer or a co-worker for injuries suffered in a work related accident. However, there are exceptions to this rule that should be discussed in more detail with an experienced attorney. If your injury was caused by someone other than your employer or co-worker, you may be able to file a lawsuit for personal injuries in addition to filing a claim for Workers Compensation benefits.