Hurt at work?
When you have an accident at work, it can be jarring. In many cases, work accidents interrupt the source of your income that you use to put food on the table for your family.
It all starts out with a painful injury, and now you have concerns about providing for your family. Add to this situation the stress of not being able to return to work, and now you may become stressed at home. Many clients have told me that their marriage is strained because of their injury, and the changing dynamics. If you have no income and you’re injured, it creates a lot of anxiety and uncertainty on the home front, and you don’t know how you are going to move forward. When you least expected it, your life got turned upside down, and it is not your fault. All of this can make you feel helpless at times.
And, in some cases, the insurance does not even pay you the benefits that you’re entitled to receive! Perhaps they assume that you don’t know how to deal with them. Don’t give up; you have rights.
Try not to be discouraged, because there are often laws that give you rights you didn’t even know you had.
What is the Workers’ Compensation Act?
The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act has been around for many years.
The Act spells out that people who are entitled to compensation for their injuries should get it. But often, people need legal help to get what they’re entitled to receive.
Responsibilities of employers and insurance and the excuses they may give
If your employer had more than 3 employees when you were injured, they were probably responsible for insuring you as an employee. Many times employers don’t want to tell you if they have insurance, possibly because they don’t want their insurance rates to go up or maybe they don’t want a workers’ comp. audit. But having insurance is much better than not having it.
Many times they say:
- “Don’t go to the emergency room.”
- “I’ll pay for your treatment.”
- “You are going to improve, just wait and see.”
Be careful, and don’t believe the lies of a stingy employer.
Report your injury as soon as possible
In North Carolina when you are injured on the job, it is important that your employer report the injury to their insurance company. You and your employer should also report the injury to the Industrial Commission. Of course, you can’t likely predict the future or what your injury will look like. That is why it could be important to file workers’ compensation insurance, especially with the most serious accidents.
What is Form 18?
In North Carolina we have a form called the Form 18. A Form 18 is completed for work accident cases to ensure that the insurance company and the Industrial Commission have notice of your injury right away. That’s often when the wheels start to turn on your claim, and things get moving. Consult with Attorney Jacob Goad to talk about the importance of notice.