When you get injured at work in Minnesota, navigating the workers’ compensation system could quickly become a headache. This brief checklist can help you get started and understand the process.
- Do You Have a Workplace Injury?
To receive workers’ compensation, you must get injured while working or while doing something related to your employment. “Something related to your employment” is broad. For example, you might trip and fall while leaving the building to walk to your car. Or you might get in a car accident while driving between two different work locations. However, if you were injured on personal time while doing personal errands or activities, then you likely do not have a qualifying injury. If you are not sure, talk to a lawyer.
- Have You Reported the Injury?
You must report the workplace injury to start receiving workers’ compensation benefits. Tell your manager, the safety officer, or Human Resources. Insist that your employer notify its workers’ compensation insurance company of the injury.
- Have You Heard Back from the Insurance Company?
After your employer speaks to the workers’ compensation insurance company, you should hear from the insurer within a couple of weeks. It should send you a notice that either says that you will begin receiving benefits or that your claim was denied. At that point, you can accept the benefits or begin disputing the denial.
- Are You Receiving Benefits?
You should verify that you are receiving all benefits to which you are entitled. Minnesota workers’ compensation offers payment of medical expenses, wage-loss benefits, and vocational rehabilitation benefits. Initially, the insurance company might only pay for your medical expenses, even though you took time off work because of the injury. Keep track of time you take off work and why, including by getting doctor’s notes and notifying your employer in writing. If you are not receiving benefits that you deserve, contact a lawyer.
- Do You Need Legal Help?
Unfortunately, many Minnesota workers do not receive workers’ compensation benefits properly or get denied benefits altogether. If you have followed the steps above but still are not receiving benefits, then it is time to speak to a lawyer. The lawyer can figure out what went wrong – for example, your employer might not have notified its insurer, or the insurer may deny that you were hurt at work – and help you fix it.
Need help getting workers’ compensation for your injury? Joe Osterbauer, Esq. and the Osterbauer Law Firm stand up for injured Minnesota workers’ rights. Joe’s 27 years of workers’ compensation experience and his team’s speedy service combine to get clients the results they need. To schedule a free consultation, visit Osterbauer Law Firm online or call Joe’s office at (612) 334-3434.