Settling a claim for workers’ compensation can be difficult and arduous. Recent reforms to Illinois workers’ compensation law have made it harder for injured employees to receive medical payouts. Workers can protect their own best interests after an accident by avoiding the three most common errors made on compensation claims.
Error #1: Not documenting everything carefully
After an injury on the job, there are many things to worry about. Medical care, money problems, family issues and the pain of the injury are all stressful parts of everyday life. Despite the stress of the accident, workers must document everything carefully to make the strongest case for compensation.
A good Illinois workers’ compensation claim should include documentation of all the following facts:
- Work conditions at the time of the accident
- All medical care received since the accident
- Statements made by doctors, physical therapists, supervisors, co-workers and other involved parties
- Precise details of all important events since the injury occurred
If an injury claim does not state these facts clearly, it risks denial.
Error #2: Lying about the case
Workers injured on the job, like all people, do not have perfect memories. There will be inevitable mistakes and omissions in some workers’ compensation claims. Deliberately lying about a case, on the other hand, is always inappropriate and will lead to dismissal of the case.
If a worker is at fault in an injury, there is no point in lying about the circumstances of the accident. Workers’ compensation law is designed to bypass the question of fault. Telling an untrue story about the injury will not help the employee and may cause serious legal trouble.
Error #3: Not attending hearings and depositions
Injured workers would be surprised to know how many of their colleagues fail to attend their own hearings and dispositions. If a worker does not appear at a hearing, the judge may halt benefits or dismiss the entire case. Injured employees who are unable to attend a deposition must give notice of their absence as soon as possible so a new meeting can be scheduled.
According to the official handbook of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, more than 10 percent of claims are dismissed. Many of these claims are dropped because of failure to attend crucial hearings. One of the most important parts of filing a workers’ compensation claim is simply showing up.
There are options for disabled employees who are struggling with Illinois workers’ compensation law. People who have been hurt on the job may find it beneficial to speak with a personal injury attorney.