People go to work every day rarely thinking that they will encounter a workplace accident or disease. However, these incidents are more common than you may think and can happen to anyone no matter where they work. Without taking the necessary steps and seeking treatment, there are workplace injuries and diseases that may cause life-long consequences. This is why it is important for employees to understand what needs to be done after succumbing to a workplace accident or disease, and seek compensation for the damage that has been caused because of it.
If you have suffered from a work-related illness or injury in Brooklyn, New York, read to discover 5 important steps to take to insure your health and safety are taken care of.
1. Seek advice and treatment from a medical professional
You should see a doctor as soon as possible after being involved in a workplace accident. In many cases, employers in Brooklyn will refer workers to a medical provider that has been approved by the New York Workers’ Compensation Board following a workplace injury.
Once you have been referred, it’s important to be very honest with your doctor about the extent of your injury to avoid any misdiagnoses. Remember to give a detailed description of what took place leading up to the injury so that your doctor clearly understands that your injury occurred at work. Otherwise, your workers’ compensation insurance may not cover your medical expenses. The same goes for occupational diseases. If you have become ill from your job, be sure to describe your work conditions and environment so that you will receive proper coverage.
2. Get a disability rating
In some cases, workers may get injuries that will temporarily disable them from performing their everyday job duties. When this happens, workers’ compensation insurance may be able to cover a portion of the money an employee has lost from not being able to work. That said, it’s important to get as much information from your doctor as you can. After they diagnose your injury or illness, they will be able to provide you with a note explaining whether you are able to return to work right away, or if you need additional time to recover.
While it’s crucial for your health and well-being to take the time you need to recover, it is also important to return to work as soon as you know you are capable of performing your job. Those who continue to miss days when they are able to work may complicate their workers’ compensation claim.
3. Provide your employer with an accident report
Employers are typically responsible for filing their workers’ compensation claim with their insurance company when an employee is injured or sick. Therefore, it is extremely important to notify your employer in writing of your disease or injury as soon as possible. Just as you communicate your situation to a doctor, employees should give a detailed explanation of their injury, how it occurred, where it occurred, and the date and time of the incident. According to the New York law, a worker who has been injured at work has 30 days from the date of the accident to notify their employer and up to 2 years for occupational disease claims. Missing or exceeding these deadlines could result in denial of compensation.
4. Speak to a New York workers’ compensation lawyer
Before you file a claim for a workplace injury or disease, it is smart to consult with an attorney who has experience handling workers’ compensation cases in Brooklyn, New York. This way, you will get the opportunity to discuss the benefits you are eligible for ahead of time with a legal professional. Lawyers are especially beneficial for employees who may have pre-existing conditions, are having trouble getting proper treatment, are unable to perform their job duties due to their injury, or for those who have already filed a claim and it has been denied.
5. File a claim
After you have notified your employer of your workplace injury, the next step is to file an Employment Claim (Form C-3) within 2 years of your injury, or two years after you have contracted an occupational disease due to your work environment.
Medical Solutions for Your Workplace Injury or Disease
Workplace injuries and occupational diseases are common occurrences, and it’s important to know how to be prepared for any situation. If you have suffered a workplace injury or impairment, Metro Healthcare Partners, a worker’s compensation clinic in Brooklyn, NY, can help. Our staff specializes in multiple areas relating to workplace injuries and occupational diseases, and we are focused on helping our patients recover as quickly as possible.
Give us a call today at 718-769-2521 to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced Brooklyn workers’ compensation doctors.
We accept workers’ compensation insurance, no-fault, medical liens, and medical major plans.