Have you been injured at work? Well, you are not alone.
In 2015, there were 2.9 million work-related injuries in our country with almost 70,000 reported work-related injuries in North Carolina. For ten years, I worked at the North Carolina Industrial Commission, our state’s “court system” for workers’ compensation cases. Over those ten years, I found that people with work-related injuries face the most serious situation in their lives — they are sick, unable to work and are having financial difficulties.
When you are injured at work, there are a few things you should do.
1. Inform your employer about your injury immediately and in writing.
2. If you do not report your injury within thirty days of the injury, you could lose your rights to benefits. Many employers have a form for you to complete.
3. Seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Your employer may send you to the doctor. If not, use your health insurance to get medical treatment.
4. Take care in how you describe your injury. Not all work-related injuries are covered by workers’ compensation.
5. File your claim, or Form 18, with the Industrial Commission within two years.
6. Consult an attorney for help.
7. You can also call the Industrial Commission Information Specialists at 1-800-688-8349 for information.
Workers’ compensation is complicated. Follow these steps to avoid making a mistake which can cause a problem later in your claim.