As an Alaska resident and worker, do you know what steps to take if you are injured at work? Many people assume that their employers, and more specifically their employers’ insurance companies, will take care of them if they are injured, but this can be a dangerous assumption. Understanding your rights can always work to your benefit if you are injured while on the job.
First Things First
The first thing to do if you are injured at work is to seek medical treatment. This may seem evident, but many workers who are injured on the job brush off the injury and refuse medical treatment. This can be devastating for your worker’s compensation case if you later find that you need medical help. Therefore, any injury, even if it seems minor, should be first reported to your supervisor then examined by a qualified medical practitioner.
Under Alaska law, every employer with more than one employee is required to carry worker’s compensation insurance. The purpose of this insurance is to pay for your medical treatment if you are injured. This is not a benefit or bonus to you as an employee; it is a requirement for doing business in the state of Alaska, so you are entitled to use this insurance coverage if you are injured.
Alaska law also states that you are permitted to choose your doctor. This means that you can use a doctor with whom you feel comfortable. Whoever your doctor is, he or she should fill out the required Form 07-6102 so that your treatment is covered by worker’s compensation insurance.
What Happens if My Employer Refuses to Cover My Injuries?
Employers are required by law to carry insurance to cover your injuries. If your employer refuses to do so, he or she may be in violation of state law. It is important to report this type of problem to state authorities immediately so that you are protected.
Further, if your employer has let coverage lapse or refused to carry worker’s compensation coverage, he or she may be subject to a lawsuit to pay for your injuries. It is very important that you learn about your worker’s compensation coverage immediately after being injured and take steps if your employer is not compliant.
What Happens When I File A Claim?
Claims for worker’s compensation injuries can be complicated. In many cases, victims are given the minimum amount of care before being released to go back to work. This is often the case when you use a doctor recommended by the insurance company, and it is another good reason to choose your own doctor.
For workers who are struggling to get their employers or insurance companies to pay for their treatment, there is help. Barber & Associates, a leading Alaska injury attorney firm, can help you navigate the complicated process of filing an injury claim and protecting your right to receive full treatment through recovery. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.