Workers’ compensation covers many types of injuries – even those that only last for a short time. Employees who have been injured but quickly recovered should investigate their options for benefits.
Work-related injuries that last a short time could include:
- A deep cut that requires stitches from using a sharp tool
- A muscle strain from lifting a box
- A smashed fingernail from a hammer blow
- An infectious occupational disease that can be treated with a round of antibiotics
These injuries may require only one or two visits to the doctor and possibly a day or two off work.
Do You Have to Pay Your Own Medical Expenses?
If your injury happened at work, then you should not have to pay your own medical expenses. Even quickly-healing injuries qualify you for workers’ compensation. Your employer’s insurance company is obligated to pay for reasonable medical expenses. If you take time off work to heal, you can get wage-loss benefits – even for only a day or two.
Some injuries may be too minor and brief to warrant payment of benefits (for example, a broken fingernail or a small paper cut). If bleeding will not stop or you are still in pain days later, seek immediate medical attention no matter your concerns about medical expenses. You should not risk making your injury worse because you think you do not qualify for workers’ comp. After you get treatment, talk to a lawyer about your options.
What If You Didn’t Report the Injury at the Time?
Even if you didn’t report the injury right after it happened, you may still recover benefits. You should report it to your employer as soon as possible. The employer must inform the workers’ compensation insurance company within 10 days.
Be aware, however, that insurers are much more likely to deny benefits if you delay in reporting an injury – even if it is minor. It is important to make a report and inform your employer that you are going to the doctor. If you already saw the doctor, keep your appointment slip and paperwork, and ask your doctor to provide records detailing the treatment you received and the cost.
Need help getting workers’ compensation for your injury that healed quickly? 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.