Filing workers' compensation in DC - can I let the insurance company do it?

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No, don't rely on the insurance company to file your claim.

Don't ever rely on your employer or coworkers to file your claim.  They can't do it for you.

You have to tell your employer after getting hurt at work in D.C., Maryland or Virginia, and you should do this as quickly as you can, immediately after the accident is best. But, just because you've told your employer that you've been injured doesn't mean a claim is now filed.  Talking to the workers comp insurance company doesnt't mean your claim has been filed.  The Human Resources person at your job telling you she called in the claim doesn't mean your workers comp claim has been filed.

Plus, workers' compensation is about protecting your rights - you don't want to put the responsibility of protecting your and your family's future in someone else's hands. Especially not the insurance company whose main goal is to pay you less in benefits!

After an injury at work, it's hard to know what to do to make sure you're recovering as best as you can - especially if you've never been hurt at work before. A lot of times injured workers believe that filing a claim means just telling your employer or the insurance company that they've been hurt at work. This is not true. And, it can definitely hurt your claim in the long run. 

This is one of  the five common mistakes people usually make that can hurt their workers' compensation case. Don't let that happen to you. 

Only you can file your workers compensation claim after an injury at work by signing the claim form yourself. If you haven't done this, you have not filed your workers comp claim.

And do you know where to file your workers comp claim?

Workers comp insurance companies are known for sending claim forms to injured workers in our area to sign and return so they can be filed in a jurisdiction that pays less in benefits every week (for workers earning about $1,500.00 per week - and this includes overtime, bonuses, commissions, and earnings from a 2nd job, D.C. benefits every week are higher than Virginia or Maryland).  

Workers compensation nsurance company lawyers know this and tell insurance adjusters to send you claim forms to file in the place that will pay you less. 

That's just one example showing that after being seriously hurt at work and trying to get workers comp benefits, you need the help of an experienced workers comp lawyer who literally wrote the book on D.C. workers comp to make sure the insurance company isn't taking advantage of you. And they often take advantage of unrepresented injured workers.

If you or someone you know was injured at work, give us a ca ll at 202-393-3320 and we'd be happy to help get them back on their feet. We have educational materials that are free to injured workers in Maryland, DC and Virginia.  

With a serious injury, you have enough to worry about.  Recovery, rehab, new medical bills, worries about your check coming on time,.  A whole new legal system with new requirements and terms - like light duty and utilization review and vocational rehabilitations and filing the right claim forms can all be overwheleming - so we take care of all of that for you.   

Frank R. Kearney, Attorney-at-Law
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Experienced DC Workers' Comp, Long Term Disability & Accident Lawyer