The purpose of your workers’ compensation benefits is to provide you with financial support as you recover from your injury. In serious cases, such as when your accident causes permanent disability, workers’ compensation benefits can also provide career support as you look for a new job.
Getting what you deserve out of workers’ compensation is easier when you know some strategies to maximize your benefits.
Stay informed and communicate
Prior to any injury, it is helpful to know the scope of your workers’ compensation benefits. Are there situations where your benefits do not apply? Do you have to coordinate medical care with specific doctors in network with the insurance company? What is the process for notifying your employer of an injury? What are your rights? What should you expect from your employer? Knowing the answers to these questions can help you verify that your benefits correspond with what your employer promised.
Communication is equally as important so you can keep your employer informed of your condition. Your medical team can help you assess your injuries and the likelihood of returning to work. Using this information, you may coordinate a plan with your employer to resume your job. Starting to work again without informing your employer and while still receiving workers’ compensation may result in penalties including the loss of your benefits.
Act promptly and responsibly
As soon as you have received adequate medical attention for your injuries, reach out to your employer right away and inform them of what happened. Waiting to report an accident or injury could jeopardize your benefits.
During recovery, make sure you attend all required doctor’s appointments. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, this may include vocational rehabilitation or therapy. Skipping appointments can look bad and your employer may come after you alleging fraud. As you follow protocols, you can expect the same from your employer.