Getting hurt at work can be harrowing, and even more so if you suffer more than one injury on the clock.
If your work causes you to incur multiple injuries, workers’ comp can cover all necessary medical treatments and some of your lost wages while you recover.
Below, we tell you how to file multiple workers’ compensation claims and what you can expect during the claims process.
Once you’ve read about the claims process, reach out to our team to learn more about how we can help you obtain the most benefits from the workers’ compensation system.
The Basic Steps to Filing Multiple Workers’ Compensation Claims
Every time you get hurt at work, you need to act right away to help ensure that you get the financial support and treatment you should receive.
Additionally, take the following steps to protect your health and your interests in each claim.
Immediately seek medical attention for all your injuries. Visit a healthcare provider for each injury to get proper treatment and documentation of your medical condition.
You want to do this right away. And you need to give all healthcare providers thorough details about how each incident occurred and all symptoms you have been experiencing since each work incident.
Many workers’ compensation insurance carriers try to deny benefits by claiming that employees’ ailments are unrelated to anything that happened at work.
But with immediate and constant medical care that is documented by your provider, you can prove that your symptoms are work-related, and you can protect yourself against denials from the insurance company.
Notify Your Employer
Inform your employer about each work injury as soon as it happens. Let your employer know about all the injuries you have sustained so that they are aware of the full extent of your situation.
You need to notify your employer in writing within at least thirty days of getting hurt, but the sooner you can let your employer know, the better.
Complete Form 18 for Each Injury
Form 18, which is called “Notice of Accident to Employer and Claim of Employee, Representative, or Dependent,” initiates your legal claim for workers’ compensation benefits.
For each injury, fill out a separate Form 18 and submit it to North Carolina’s Industrial Commission and your employer.
You must file this form within two years of each injury to pursue your claims.
If you submit this form to your employer within 30 days of suffering harm, it can double as the written notice you are required to give your employer regarding work injuries.
You can find this form on the North Carolina Industrial Commission’s website, or you can ask your employer for a copy.
On each Form 18, clearly describe each specific injury, how it occurred, and the date and time of each incident. Include as much information as you can about each injury, as this will help the claims process.
Submit the Forms
Once you have completed Form 18 for each injury, give all forms to the Industrial Commission and your employer.
If you miss more than one day of work or rack up more than $4,000 in medical bills because of your injury, your employer must fill out Form 19.
Regardless of whether your employer submits Form 19 to the Industrial Commission, you must timely file Form 18 to protect your right to workers’ compensation benefits.
Make sure to keep copies of all the completed Form 18s for your records. This way, you have a record of what you reported and when.
Keeping these forms can prevent the insurance company from attempting to poke holes in your claim in an unfair effort to withhold funds or save on medical expenses.
Stay on top of all your treatment recommendations, attend all appointments with your healthcare providers, and report every change in symptoms that you notice.
By following up on your care and your needs, you can catch every injury and impairment that your employer should be covering.
You should also stay in touch with your employer and the workers’ compensation insurance carrier to ensure they are processing your claims for all the injuries you reported.
If you have any concerns, consider seeking advice from a knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorney.
What If I Want to Settle My Claims?
Whether you’re claiming workers’ comp for a single injury or workers’ comp for multiple injuries, settlements typically should include the following:
- Medical expenses,
- A portion of lost wages,
- Compensation for permanent impairment,
- Compensation for disfigurement, and
- Compensation for vocational rehabilitation.
Before you settle, you want to make sure that you fully understand the extent of all of your injuries.
An experienced attorney can help you properly time settlement negotiations so that you can accurately assess the quality of any offer you receive.
We Can Help You Get What You Need
At Mehta & McConnell, we have a unique understanding of how to win benefits in workers’ compensation claims.
Our experienced attorneys have worked for insurance companies in the past, so we know the games they play, and we know how to win those games so that injured workers receive all the compensation and treatment they deserve.