You know that workplace accidents and injuries can happen to anyone. You just never expected it to happen to you. You never expected it to alter your life so completely. And you never imagined that it could cost so much.
Filing for workers’ compensation does not have to be daunting. However, in order to obtain the compensation you deserve, you do need to file correctly.
Here are some reasons your claim could be denied:
1. You don’t report your injury to your employer in time. In Oklahoma, you need to tell your employer about the injury within 30 days after it happened. You can do this verbally or in writing, but you often have to fill out an accident report.
2. You miss the deadline to file your claim. Oklahoma provides a generous window of opportunity to file a claim — two years from the time of injury. However, if you wait a long time to file your claim, the benefits you receive could be reduced significantly, or your claim could be denied altogether. It is best to file soon after the injury.
3. You don’t prove that you sustained your injury at work. In Oklahoma, you need to provide evidence that your injury either happened at work, or that it is more likely than not it happened because of work. If someone saw the injury, it is helpful if they can corroborate your story.
4. You tell two different stories to your doctor and in your claim documents. It is important to be accurate in the way you report the details of the injury to your employer and to your doctor. Do your best to make sure that you are consistent in your story. If you have questions, ask an experienced workers’ comp lawyer.
5. You try to handle the claim on your own instead of getting help from an attorney. A workers’ comp lawyer can provide clarity about the process and help you deal with the insurance company, including any negotiations that may be necessary to get you the full amount of benefits you need.
If you have been injured at work, you may be considering filing for workers’ compensation, and you may have a lot of questions. Everyone’s situation is different, and it is a good idea to seek guidance on your specific legal issue by contacting a workers’ compensation lawyer.