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Four common mistakes people make when applying for workers' compensation

When you have been injured on the job, it can be a time of confusion. In addition to dealing with the immediate injury, thoughts on how to pay your bills, both household and medical, can seem overwhelming when you may be facing time off work. In addition, some employees may face the insecurity of wondering whether they will have a job to return to once they are well. Workers' compensation can help ease your worries, but you must be careful to avoid these common mistakes.

1. Not reporting the accident

Many workers get hurt and continue on with their duties as though nothing happened, oftentimes exaggerating the injury and not getting the medical and financial help they need. It is essential that you report any accident, in writing, to the shift manager or other authority immediately. This makes it possible to show when and where the accident occurred so there is no doubt that you suffered a workplace injury.

2. Not keeping a detailed record

You need to keep a detailed record of every event that relates to your injury and the follow-up. This record should include a detailed report on exactly what happened, who was told, any medical visits and any other details. Whenever possible, provide actual medical records and bills and make sure dates and times, as well as names of those talked to, are included.

3. Not seeking medical help

Sometimes an injury may seem minor and the worst pain comes the next day, or even a week later. A minor injury can be made worse by avoiding treatment. Regardless of how badly you feel you are injured, you should seek medical treatment that can verify what injury occurred and help determine if any further pain is directly related to it.

4. Accepting the insurance company's first offer

Insurance companies will offer the lowest compensation they can. Many workers will accept this initial offer because they feel it is their only chance of compensation. All too often, the amount doesn't even cover half the expense. An experienced lawyer, however, can help you get this initial offer increased to ease the financial burden created by the injury. Think of the initial offer by the insurance company as a starting point for negotiations rather than a final offer.

Final words

Consulting a lawyer who is experienced in workmen's compensation can help you avoid common workers' compensation and make a big difference in how well you and your family navigate this difficult time.

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