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If you or a loved one sustains an on-the-job injury, you need to be able to count on the workers’ compensation system to help provide coverage of your medical expenses, lost wages, or disability benefits. However, it is important that work injury victims understand the timeline for receiving the coverage they need. The team at DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo wants to discuss how quickly and for how long you will receive workers’ comp benefits.
When you have been injured on the job, your employer needs to be notified immediately. That is because, under state law, employers are required to authorize as much as $10,000 worth of appropriate medical treatment within one day of them learning about an employee injury or illness. This is immediate coverage that is available before other benefits kick in. After the initial report, the next step will be to file a claim.
When your employer is notified of your injury, they will likely provide you with a DWC-1 Workers’ Compensation Claim form that you need to fill out. This is the form that will officially initiate the workers’ compensation process. After an initial injury, you only have 30 days to notify your employer and file this form. Failure to do so could result in an injured worker not being able to receive any compensation for their on the job injury. We should also note that there is an overall statute of limitations for filing a work injury claim of one year from the date the injury occurs, but the employer must still be notified of the incident within 30 days of it occurring.
Your employer must accept, reject, or deny your claim within 14 days of receiving your DWC-1 form. If a claim is delayed, the employer will have up to 90 days to investigate the situation. During a delay period, your medical bills must be paid. However, the employer will not have to provide temporary disability benefits. During this period, you will need to seek temporary disability under the State Disability Insurance (SDI) or other disability benefits to recover lost wages. If a claim is not denied within this 90-day window, the disability payments will be required to begin.
If your employer does deny your claim, you can begin the appeals process. At this point, you may need to speak to an attorney because an appeal can become comprehensive. This stage typically requires extensive paperwork, evidence collection, witness testimony recordings, and evaluations from third-party doctors. The appeals process for a workers’ compensation claim can take anywhere from a few months to more than a year.
If you or somebody you love has sustained a workplace injury, you should be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. However, are you having trouble receiving the compensation you are entitled to, contact DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo today. Let our Orange County workers comp lawyers investigate the case in order to secure coverage of your medical bills, lost wages, and any necessary disability benefits. You can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or by calling (714) 783-2205.