These are the first steps you should take when you are injured or become ill at work:
1. Report the workplace injury to your employer immediately. Try to prepare a written report and get a copy of it for your records.
2. Fill out an injury or illness claim form. Employers should have you complete a claim form regardless of whether you have already reported (orally or in writing) the accident. You want to submit a complete form as soon as possible after you’ve been injured. Reporting your matter quickly helps you obtain workers’ compensation benefits sooner. Be sure to fill the form out thoroughly, be specific, and obtain a copy.
3. Seek medical help. Many times an employer will have a designated medical provider for workplace claims. However, under Illinois law, you are entitled to see a doctor of your own choosing. Make an appointment and get treatment promptly. Otherwise, the chances of your claim being denied increase. Make every effort to follow the doctor’s advice. Be sure to tell the doctor that the injury or illness was due to a workplace incident and explain exactly how it happened. If the doctor doesn’t feel that you can return to work because of your injury, make sure to ask for an “off work slip.”
4. Get a free legal consultation with a qualified workers’ compensation attorney. An initial meeting will help you get answers to your specific workers’ compensation questions. Workers’ compensation attorneys are skilled in pursuing all the benefits a worker can receive to improve their health and well-being. They are your best tool to determine whether you have a compensable claim, protect your rights, assist you to get appropriate medical treatment, and get the compensation that you deserve for your workers’ compensation claim. Workers’ compensation attorneys also are aware of the latest laws and regulations to help you navigate the complexities of these types of claims. They are also skilled at determining whether you have a personal injury claim against someone other than your employer.
Click on the links below to learn more about workers’ compensation claims, get answers to frequently asked questions, and obtain other valuable workers’ compensation information.