If you’ve suffered an injury at work in Cleveland, Ohio, you’ll want to do everything possible to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Part of this involves ensuring that your claim form is filled out correctly and that you submit the necessary supporting documents. A simple typo won’t usually prevent you from getting benefits. However, there are some bigger mistakes that can cost you.
That’s why it’s so important that you hire an experienced Cleveland workers’ comp lawyer. They will assist you in providing all the required information and prevent you from making errors. Let’s look at some of the things you need to ensure you do.
Report Your Injury to Your Employer
You need to notify your employer that you suffered a workplace injury or you have been diagnosed with an occupational illness. This opens an investigation into the incident. The outcome of your employer’s investigation can be used to support the claim you will submit to the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. This will help to show that your injury or illness is work-related and you didn’t acquire it by other means.
File Your Claim Within the Deadline
You typically have one year from the date of the accident to submit your application for workers’ comp. However, if you have an occupational disease, you have two years from the date the illness was diagnosed as being work-related, or the date it caused disability. The later date applies. Most employees file on time because they’re eager to get compensation. However, some wait too long and before they know it, the deadline has passed. Employees who delay filing may do so because they fear their employer will retaliate or that if they take time off work, they will lose on their wages.
Follow the Doctors’ Orders
It’s possible for your employer to challenge your claim. They may argue that you aren’t so ill that you can’t work. They may look for every possible sign that you’re faking or exaggerating your injuries. If your doctor advised you to get a particular treatment or refrain from certain activities, you must do what they say. As Cleveland workers’ compensation lawyers will tell you, you also need to keep all your appointments and fill all the prescriptions. Otherwise, you give your employer an opportunity to reject your claim.
Save All the Paperwork Relating to Your Condition
Your application for workers’ comp must be supported by medical evidence. This can include medical records, hospital discharge papers, prescriptions, and therapy notes. The more evidence you can present, the more likely it is that your claim will be approved.
Contact a Cleveland Workers’ Comp Lawyer
It’s not mandatory that you hire an attorney when you file a workers’ comp claim. However, you have a right to seek advice from a lawyer at any stage of the process. While many workers wait until their claim is denied to get legal advice, it’s best to talk to a lawyer early on. This helps to reduce the likelihood that you’ll make costly mistakes.
Don’t Talk to the Third-Party Administrator
The third-party administrator’s role is to protect the interests of your employer. An individual may approach you and try to get you to talk about your injury or illness. While they may seem friendly, they will use what you say against you so it’s best not to speak to them. If you choose to engage, stick to basic information like when and where the injury occurred, and which parts of your body were affected. Don’t say anything about how you presently feel physically or mentally. You also shouldn’t bring up any past injuries. Your attorney will offer you more advice about what you should and should not say.
Don’t Sign Anything without Consulting a Lawyer
You should refuse to put your signature on any documents until an experienced Cleveland workers’ comp lawyer can review them. If you sign a settlement offer, you can’t ask for more money later if your injuries turn out to be more serious. Sometimes, companies offer a speedy settlement that’s tempting but it may not be in your best interests.
Contact Our Attorneys Today for Help with Your Claim
A Cleveland workers’ compensation attorney can help you to get maximum compensation for your workplace injury or illness. When you’re recovering, it can be hard to focus on anything except getting well. Our team will take care of all the complicated bits, so you don’t have to worry about paperwork or appeals. Call us to schedule a consultation today.