Many people never think that they will find themselves in a position to have to file a workers’ compensation claim, but the truth of the matter is that some eventually do. It can be difficult to navigate through the process, and not knowing if you are providing sufficient information in order for your claim to be denied. Often, people need help from a law firm specializing in workers’ compensation cases. For those who are trying to understand the process, here are 5 health items that need to be documented for workers’ compensation.
1- Medical History
Employees need to remember that medical history must be documented. Medical records pertaining directly to the work injury need to be provided so that the insurance company can validate the claim. The medical records provided will be used to understand the severity of the injury and any treatment options that are available. Keep in mind that a work-related illness or injury can have a direct impact on a pre-existing condition, so be sure and provide a complete medical history when filing the claim. The more you can provide, the better as it will strengthen your case.
2- Details of the Work-Related Injury
It is important to provide as many details as possible related to the injury. Make sure to document exactly how and when it happened, as well as the date, time, and any witnesses to the incident. These details are needed to present the strongest case possible and help the insurer to make a determination of the validity of the claim being filed. Remember that no detail is too small to include.
3- Symptoms and Physical Limitations
Simply providing an overview of the injury isn’t enough to make a strong claim. The employee must provide any symptoms resulting from what happened and, of course, physical limitations that they are experiencing as a result. Provide as much detail as possible, and never assume that the insurance company will know what is happening if you don’t tell them. Can’t walk more than a few steps due to your injury? Include details of that. Does the severe back pain that you incurred as a result of your work injury prevent you from being able to sit in a car and drive? Go into as much detail about that, and how it is negatively impacting your life. Provide a complete overview of the severity of the pain that you have experienced as a result of the work-related injury or illness, and be sure to include any side effects that you have experienced as well.
4- Medical Treatment
Make sure to document all medical treatment you are receiving as a result of your work-related injury. Details such as the healthcare professionals you have seen, the treatments that you have received, any medications that have been prescribed, and any follow-up appointments that are necessary are critical. Providing this information will help the company determine if the treatment is necessary for the injury or illness you are experiencing. Be sure to include the dates and times of the appointments.
5- Restrictions at Work
Often, a workers’ compensation claim means that if an employee is able to return to work in the future, there will be limitations on what they can do. They may need special accommodations as well. Be sure to document everything in your claim, such as limitations on lifting, walking, standing, or bending. The employee should go into as much detail as possible as to how this affects their ability to perform their job duties, as this can have an impact on the outcome of the claim. Be sure to include any details pertaining to special accommodations that your employer has provided. Examples might include modified duties, reduced or special work hours, any devices that are needed to assist with the performance of an employee’s duties or any other special arrangements that are necessary.
When preparing a workers’ compensation case, it’s best to take proactive steps and document the above information throughout your injury and recovery.