Employees in all types of business often face injury due to hazards of the workplace. Even though a good employer may do all they can to prevent these injuries and run a safe workplace, injuries can still happen for a variety of reasons. So, what can you do if such misfortune strikes and you have become injured in your workplace?
At Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition, we understand that accidents can happen quite unexpectedly and no one is better prepared to handle these surprising misfortunes than us. If you have suffered a workplace injury, let us help you obtain the compensation you need, while you focus on making a recovery.
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How Long Do I Have To Report Workplace Injuries In Loganville, Georgia?
Reporting your workplace injury in Georgia is a time-sensitive affair. There is a time limit in which employees are required to report their injury and begin the process to obtain worker’s compensation.
By Law, the employee is required to report their injury to their employer within 30 days. This provides the employee with enough time to have their injury fully examined by an approved medical professional and have the results of the examination delivered to their employer.
Failure to make this important report in the given 30-day time frame can result in losing the right to compensation. The 30-day period begins on the day of the injury.
In cases where the employee has become sick or developed a condition caused by hazards of the workplace, the 30-day time limit will begin counting down from the date the employee was made aware of the condition, that is, from the date they received a medical diagnosis of their condition.
Who Should I Report My Workplace Injury To?
After becoming injured at the workplace, the first order of business is to have your injuries examined and treated by an approved medical professional. This doctor will provide the employee with a diagnosis of the condition as well as for instructions for the recovery process. If the doctor recommends the employee takes more than seven  days off work, the employee must report this to their employer.
There is no rule that states this report must be made in writing, but in our experience, we have found that making a written report, such as sending an email detailing the incident that caused the injury and a description of the injury itself is a good idea.
For one, this provides your employer with details of the injury that they can refer to at a glance when reporting the incident to their insurance provider.
Furthermore, verbal reports may not be remembered and your employer could argue that they never received the report. An email report provides that essential timestamp and proof the report was made.
Employer Responsibilities After A Workplace Injury
The employer is required by law to take certain steps to ensure that their employees can secure compensation in the event of an injury.
1. Record and Report the Injury
The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) requires that employers record and make reports on all injuries and accidents that occur in their workplace. If the injuries resulted in the employee being killed or hospitalized, the employer will have 8 hours to make this report. If the injuries resulted in the loss of an eye or amputation of a body part, the report must be made within 24 hours of the accident.
2. Report the Injury to the Insurance Carrier
Upon receiving the report of your injury, your employer is required to make a report to their insurance provider and file the “Employer’s First Report of Injury or Occupational Disease” (WC-1) form.
This is required for all injuries or medical conditions that will require the employee to be excused from work to recover for at least 7 days. Employees should ask their employer for a copy of the WC-1 form they submitted to keep as part of their records.
Your employer will have 21-days from the date of receiving the injury report to contact their insurance provider and submit their claim for worker’s compensation. Failure to do this within the given time frame can result in penalties.
Employee’s Responsibilities After A Workplace Accident
Obtain medical treatment
The employee must seek medical attention for their injuries from an approved medical practitioner. Your employer is responsible for posting a panel of approved doctors in the workplace for all to see.
Alternatively, you can request a list of approved physicians from your employer or HR department. After you have had your condition or injuries examined by this doctor, you will receive a treatment plan and instructions for your recovery — which will include how much time you will be excused from work.
File Your Claim with the State Board of Workers’ Compensation in Georgia
The employee must also file their claims with the State Board of Worker’s Compensation (SWBC). This is done by filing the WC-14 form, which can be found on the SWBC website or requested from your employer or your HR department.
Once you have found the form, request or download three and fill them all out. One will go to the SWBC, another to your employer and the last one should be kept in your personal records.
Make Sure Your Employer’s Insurance Carrier Has Been Notified
Never make the mistake of assuming that everything is going well. Even though your employer is required to maintain communications with you throughout the process and keep you notified, you will do well to keep tabs on the process yourself as well.
This can include contacting your employer’s insurance provider to ensure that your claim has been made. You can get the contact information for the insurance provider from your employer or from your HR department.
Final Notes On Reporting A Workplace Injury In Loganville, Georgia.
Obtaining worker’s compensation is a detailed process and small discrepancies and simple errors can result in the insurance claim being categorically denied. For this reason, we invite you to rely on our experience and training to help you navigate the complexities of personal injury law.
We have handled thousands of workplace injury cases and secured millions of dollars in workers’ compensation and look forward to doing the same for you. Call us at 470-518-5026 today and arrange for a consultation with our legal representatives completely FREE.