If you are injured at work, there are several steps you should take immediately to protect yourself and your family. Unfortunately, it is all too common for employers or their insurers to attempt to deny payment of medical bills and other costs after a workplace accident. For this reason, it is critical that you take steps to ensure that your claim is handled properly and that you collect the full amount of compensation due to you for your injury.
The ABCs of Workers’ Compensation
Under Alaska law, any workplace with one or more employees must have workers’ compensation insurance coverage. This policy must be purchased from a licensed company, or the employer can choose to self-insure. No employees may be charged any portion of the workers’ compensation premium as part of their benefits package.
Workers’ compensation insurance is designed to provide protection for anyone who is injured on the job. Every employee has the right to take advantage of this coverage if he or she is hurt while working for the employer. Workers’ compensation benefits are typically 80 percent of “spendable” weekly wage, which is usually equivalent to take-home pay. Most workers’ compensation payments are made on an every-two-week schedule.
What Should I Do After a Workplace Accident?
Workers’ compensation is not the only payment to which a worker may be entitled after a workplace accident. In order to ensure that the employee receives the full amount of compensation due, it is important to:
- Seek immediate medical attention. The most important thing to do after a workplace accident is to seek medical help. Even if you do not suffer a great deal of pain or disability initially, you could easily develop a much more serious condition over time. Having an immediate medical checkup not only preserves your rights but also helps you determine if you may have further issues.
- Report the accident in a timely manner and file a claim. It is very important to document your injury as soon as possible. This may simply mean informing your supervisor. However, in some cases, employers and their insurers require you to give a written account of the accident and have any witnesses document their observations as well. It is very important to follow these requirements so that you do not end up having your claim denied.
- Talk to a personal injury attorney to learn about other avenues of compensation. Your workers’ compensation claim may not be the only compensation to which you are entitled. If the employer was negligent, you may have a personal injury claim that should be handled by an experienced attorney. It is very important to seek legal advice as soon as possible so you avoid having any statute of limitations expire, which can bar you from collecting compensation.
At Barber & Associates, we have spent many years helping victims of all types of accidents. Give us a call immediately if you have suffered an injury at work or elsewhere. We are ready to work with you to ensure that you collect all the money owed to you for your injury.