Workers’ Compensation is a system that protects the employee by tasking an employer to pay or provide insurance to pay lost wages and medical expenses of an employee/staff who got injured on the job. Specific laws vary with each jurisdiction but there are consistent features. An employee who got injured in the course of employment is automatically entitled to receive certain benefits which may include wage loss benefits, medical and rehabilitation benefits, and benefits to dependents. The goal of workers’ compensation is to return the injured staff as soon as possible both physically and economically to the status of a productive worker.
By reviewing and complying with various state laws, it sets the parameters for the coverage provided by the employer, and also reports and determines what constitutes a workers’ compensation claim. The steps involved in administering a workers’ compensation claim includes;
Team Education: Educating employees on what workers’ compensation coverage is should be part of an institution’s orientation process. Policies are normally created by employers and procedures are included in employee handbooks and procedure manuals. The full details of how to report work-related injuries and illnesses should be taught.
Report Incidents: Employees should be adequately trained to report the incident of personal injury to company’s designated representative which is usually human resource personnel, a manager, or a health and safety committee member. When necessary, first aid can be given immediately and the injured employee can be referred to a health care facility if additional emergency care is required.
Complete Injury Report: A report is filed by the organization with its workers’ compensation carrier. It is vital for employers to check with their workers’ compensation carrier first, because it may be responsible for filing the incident report for employers.
Remain in Contact with the Worker’s Compensation Carrier: During the duration of the employees claim, the organization maintains contact with the workers’ compensation carrier. Medical documentation should be forwarded to the workers’ compensation carrier. There are also forms and documents the employer will be required to fill.
Maintain Contact with the Employee and Establish a Return to Work Timeline: The employer’s representative should keep the employee informed of the claim status especially on when submissions have been made, and when information regarding when wage replacement and medical treatment will be done. The representative should then establish a schedule of regular follow-up on the employee’s progress. Establishing a timeline for the employee’s return to work is imperative, as is making the determination about potential restrictions that may require accommodation and whether the employer will be able to accommodate the employee’s needs.
Return the Employee to Work: The major focus of the employer is returning an employee back to work, even if it is in a light-duty capacity. The policy for return to work should be a thoughtful, well-written document that can be administered with care, taking the employee’s needs and concerns into consideration. Return-to-work programs enable employees to make the return to normal work easier. Helping an employee return to work after an accident will make such an employee feel like an integral part of the organization and therefore important.
Contact Franks & Rechenberg. P.C. Attorneys at Law to help with your personal injury case.