I Was Injured at Work – What Should I Do?
Injuries at work usually occur due to specific events, such as slips and falls, lifting, pulling, or car accidents. Some people also get hurt at work because of repetitive movements or traumas. Work-related injuries are often devastating, resulting in steep medical bills and lost wages. If you want to protect your rights to workers’ compensation, it’s crucial that you take the proper steps to file a claim after a work accident.
You have a right to workers’ compensation whether the injury was your fault, your employer’s fault, or your coworker’s fault. Ohio law requires employers to obtain workers’ compensation insurance for all employees through the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) or a private carrier. Injured workers in Ohio are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits when they sustain work-related injuries or contract occupational diseases.
How to Report a Claim
If you were injured on the job, report your injury to your employer immediately and seek medical care as soon as possible. Your company should help you file your claim online at ohiobwc.com or through the managed care organization (MCO). Another option is to complete the First Report of an Injury, Occupational Disease or Death (FROI) application. If you don’t report your injury immediately, your claim may be denied.
If your employer is self-insured, check with them to determine how you should file your workers’ compensation claim. Furthermore, if you seek medical attention prior to filing your claim, be sure to tell your healthcare provider that it is for a workers’ compensation claim. It would then be your medical provider’s responsibility to report the injury to the managed care organization within 24 hours.
On the first visit, you are allowed to seek medical care from any physician, but after that you should only go to BWC-certified healthcare providers for treatment. If you seek treatment from a non-certified provider, you will be required to pay your own medical bills, unless it was an emergency. You can find BWC-certified healthcare providers in your area by calling 1-800-OHIOBWC or visiting the medical providers section on the BWC’s website (ohiobwc.com).
Within two weeks of filing your workers’ compensation claim, you will receive an informational packet that includes a BWC identification card, your claim number, and the name and phone number of your BWC claims services specialist. If you file your claim online, you will receive your claim number right away. Your claim number is important because you will need it anytime you contact the MCO or the BWC. You should also provide your claim number to any physician who treats your work-related injury.
Claim Allowance or Disallowance
Your claim will be allowed or denied within 28 days. Responding promptly to any inquiries from the MCO or the BWC will help speed up the process. If you disagree with the BWC’s decision regarding your claim, you can file an appeal with the Industrial Commission (IC) of Ohio within 14 days. If your claim is allowed, you’ll be reimbursed for your medical expenses and paid a percentage of the wages you lost as a result of your injury.
Were you or a loved one involved in a work-related accident? Do you have any questions about filing a workers’ compensation claim? Get the help of an experienced Columbus Ohio workers’ comp attorney to ensure that your claim is handled properly. Contact ACML today – we’ll walk you through the legal process and fight to get the compensation you need to recover from your injuries.