Immediate vs. Long-Term Workplace Injuries
When you suffer an injury at work, filing a worker’s compensation claim can help you supplement your income while you recover.
However, not all injuries are created equal. Under the law and according to the insurance company, a large difference exists between immediate and long-term workplace injuries when it relates to worker’s compensation claims.
Worker’s compensation can pay for lost wages and medical bills, but workers’ compensation will pay permanent disability benefits when the injury is permanent.
What’s The Difference Between Immediate Vs. Long-Term Workplace Injuries?
To have your injury deemed a long-term or “residual injury,(1)” you must document why the injury causes permanent damage to your ability to do your job. Medical records and doctor’s notes can help illustrate this point for insurance companies and your employer. If you demonstrate that your injury caused permanent damage, you can ask for a higher claim amount.
However, long-term injuries that result in a worker needing to be out of work long-term may trigger a switch in policies from worker’s compensation to long-term disability.
Long-term injuries can include scars, disfigurement, back or joint injuries, cumulative trauma, and diseases.
Insurance companies will grant a smaller worker’s compensation claim amount for short-term injuries, such as a bone that broke that needs time to heal.
If you think your injury is only mild or moderate(2), it’s essential to file a claim right away, as your injury could worsen later.
If you file a claim and the condition improves quickly, the insurance company will close the request. However, suppose you delay filing, and the worker’s compensation time limit elapses before your injury fully heals, or it gets worse later. In that case, you may lose any chance at workers’ compensation benefits.
What Should I Do If I’ve Been Injured At Work?
If you’ve been injured at work, regardless of that injury’s severity, you will want to file a worker’s compensation claim right away. To better understand your rights and to file the claim correctly the first time, contact the Hyland & Padilla offices right away.
Our legal team has extensive experience negotiating with insurance companies and advocating for injured employees to receive the claim they deserve to recover properly from their injuries and pay for burdensome medical expenses. We help our clients navigate the differences between worker’s compensation and long-term disability when appropriate.
We offer free consultations to prospective clients to understand your worker’s compensation claim’s details and discuss your options.