Reporting a Workers Compensation Claim
Report workers compensation injuries, in writing, to your employer as soon as possible. Never wait more than 30 days after an injury happens to report the injury. The best practice is to report an injury immediately. If you don’t report an injury immediately, report it as soon as you can, and definitely within 30 days. Many problems can be avoided by timely reporting an injury or accident and often your claim will process much smoother with immediate reporting. Early reporting allows the workers' compensation insurer to accept the claim and pay benefits as soon as possible. For more information on time limitations please follow this link: http://wcc.dli.mt.gov/tools/LimitationPeriod_NoticeToEmployer.htm.
When reporting an injury, it is always a good idea to do so in writing. Your employer may give you a form to complete or you may be asked to sign one that your employer fills out. Always read the document before you sign it and make any corrections or clarifications you believe are necessary to have a honest and complete record of what happened. Even if you are not asked to fill out or sign a first report of injury, you should write down what happened, provide a copy to your employer, and always keep a copy for yourself. You can accomplish a written report in many ways including sending an email, writing a letter, or even sending a text message. You can also fill out the First Report of Injury ("FROI") form provided by the Montana Employment Relations Division. Follow this helpful link to learn more about completing an Employment Relations Division FROI: http://erd.dli.mt.gov/work-comp-claims/claims-assistance/file-a-work-comp-claim.
When completing a report of your injury, be specific with the details of what happened. Write down what occurred, how it occurred, what parts of your body you believe were injured, and anything else relevant to the accident. You want a complete record as soon as possible while the information is still fresh in your mind. Make sure to also write down the names of any witnesses. After you report your injury, it is also a good idea to take pictures of your injuries and/or the scene of the accident.
Please know that in addition to reporting your injury within 30 days, you are required to file a workers compensation claim within one year of the injury. If either of these requirements are not met, your claim can be denied on a technicality.
Remember: if you don’t report your injury as soon as possible, it can lead to devastating consequences for you and your loved ones.
For more information, or to speak with a professional workers compensation attorney, please contact Murphy Law Firm at (406) 452-2345, or visit Murphy Law Firm online at www.murphylawoffice.net.