Anyone can be injured in the line of duty, whether you are a construction worker or a receptionist. If this happens, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, your ability to receive these benefits may depend on when you report the injury.
When is the right time to notify your employer?
As soon as possible
If you sustain an apparent injury, such as a cut or a burn, report it immediately to your employer. Of course, in some cases, it may be impossible to report immediately. For example, an office secretary who develops carpal tunnel syndrome or a miner who contracts a respiratory tract infection. In such cases, the employee should report as soon as they notice their symptoms and are sure that they have developed as a result of their work-related activities. You can report your injury to your employer or anyone in authority. And while it’s beneficial to give a written notice, you don’t have to. Reporting verbally can be enough in New Jersey.
Why should you report as soon as possible?
One of the reasons it’s crucial to report a work-related injury immediately or as soon as possible is so that your efforts to get medical attention will be covered by benefits, not serve as costs that will weigh down your pockets or your family’s budget. Your employer needs to report your case to their insurance company to investigate it to determine if you should be compensated. Reporting on time ensures these procedures are completed sooner. In turn, you can receive payment for your treatment earlier.
Reporting immediately can also allow you to establish that a work factor caused your injury or illness. If you take time before reporting, your employer’s insurer may presume that your injury/illness is not work-related, as you could have be harmed as you were exposed to different elements outside work.
For all of these reasons and more, if you have been injured or contracted an illness at work, be extra careful about your next steps to better ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.