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What Are the Time Limits to Report a Work Injury?

When you get injured while you are at work, your medical care and recovery are the most important things on your mind. Next, you want to make sure that you obtain the compensation that you deserve for your injuries. Workers’ compensation benefits may include medical treatment and payment of your wages while you are recovering from the injury. Sometimes, an injury isn’t immediately apparent. For instance, a repetitive strain injury (RSI) also known as a work-related musculoskeletal disorder (WRMSD) may appear over a long period of time, sometimes after years.

Report the Injury Promptly

As an injured worker, you have a duty to report an injury as promptly as possible. You should report the injury no later than 30 days after the accident. Report the injury to your company and then to the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation. Your employer is required to report the injury, however, you should also report it in case your employer fails to do so.

Typical personal injury claims allow two years to file a claim from the date of the accident. Workers’ compensation claims must be filed within one year of the date of the accident. Your failure to report the injury could prevent you from being able to file a claim or obtain benefits. A workers’ compensation injury should be reported as soon as it is noticed. The board has the right to review an untimely filing of a claim, but will not excuse a late filing. Therefore, if you are diagnosed with a repetitive injury or another injury that occurred over time, you must report it as soon as you find out about it.

Should I Wait to See the Doctor?

Many people who are hurt at work wait to see how severe their injury is before they visit the doctor. You may strain your back lifting something at work, but don’t give it much thought. The next day, however, you wake up in pain and can’t move. You remember that you pulled your back at work the day before. You can still see the doctor and file a workers’ compensation claim because the injury indeed occurred at work. But it could become more difficult to prove how your injury occurred the longer you wait to get treatment.

Your employer and, more importantly, the State Board of Workers’ Compensation do not know whether your injury happened at work or whether your injury occurred at home or elsewhere. You will need to provide as much proof as possible that the injury happened at work. If you get hurt but aren’t sure if it is serious, it is best to report the accident anyway. If you recover quickly without the need for medical attention then you won’t need any workers’ compensation benefits.

The workers’ compensation claim process can be difficult and complicated. This is particularly true if you wait too long to report the injury. However, you are still entitled to benefits. Contact our Atlanta workers’ compensation attorneys at The Bader Law Firm to get the guidance you need.

Seth Bader is an Auto accident, Workers Compensation and Personal Injury Attorney who practices in Atlanta, Rome, Savannah, Norcross, Carrollton, Georgia. He graduated from Florida State University College of Law, and has been practicing law for 14 years. Seth Bader believes in fighting for the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.

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