Every business is required by Colorado state law to post workers’ compensation information for their employees. Informative posters are plastered everywhere at your job.
Typically, when we are exposed to the same written message on a daily basis, we can tend to take the message for granted after a while. We no longer actually read the message.
So although we are all continuously exposed to our workers’ compensation “rights” for work place injury, most people don’t really understand those rights.
Unfortunately, in most cases of work place injury, employees return to work earlier than they should.
Most employees want to get back to work as soon as possible for several reasons. Fear of losing one’s job is common even when the company does nothing obvious to make you feel threatened.
Only your doctor can establish whether you are fit to return to work. Employers cannot fire you for taking time off from work due to an injury sustained at work.
Lack of Communication
When employers don’t communicate well with a victim of a work place accident, the employee can feel there is no other option besides going back to the job.
In many cases, there is a Return to Work program that accommodates for an adjusted work schedule as well as duties. Many physicians recommend a gradual return to full duties.
Notice of Denial
Receiving a letter indicating complete dispute of your claim for any benefits whatsoever is common. This is a typical tactic by the insurance company.
You must understand that, unfortunately, business is business.
Your employer’s insurance company wants to make it as difficult as possible for you to successfully file your claim to begin with. And if you do file, their whole goal is to pay you the least amount of money or time off from work possible.
A confused employee who has been hurt on the job may return to work believing, incorrectly, there are no other options.
Receiving a Notice of Denial is an excellent reason to see an attorney.
Employers are concerned about two things:
- The possibility of having to pay increased premiums because of your claim, and
- Employees taking advantage of the available benefits.
That’s not to say these employers don’t care about injured workers. Mostly, they do. Mostly!
Unfortunately, some employers care little about the injured employee, but rather care only about their business.
It can even be difficult to trust your direct supervisor, who may leave out important details in an attempt to protect their employment.
What Worker’s Compensation Suggestions
First, and foremost, keep an open communication line with your employer. Be upfront about the facts of the accident and any medical issues you are encountering due to the injury.
Keeping good records of everything related to the injury is extremely important. Every time you speak with someone officially about the events, medical or not, record it in a journal so that you can keep track of all the details.
A journal allows you to stay accurate. Memories fade!
The government website also acknowledges what a convoluted type of procedure filing and fighting for workers’ compensation can be.
At the first hint of problems with your claim or job as a result of the accident, you are advised to consult a lawyer.
Being informed, and legally represented, can mean a world of difference in any workers’ compensation case.