Sometimes I hear stories from injured workers that their employer ‘blew off’ their injury, or did not want to report the injury, or failed to provide any kind of documentation of a work injury. The next question becomes, why?
Why does my employer not want to report a work injury?
There are several reasons an employer may not want to report a work injury.
First, in some cases, particularly with smaller type employers, the employer may not have workers’ compensation insurance. It is illegal for an employer to not have workers compensation insurance. Although your employer may not have workers’ compensation insurance, that does not mean you aren’t entitled to compensation and medical care for your work injury. There is a process through the Pennsylvania Uninsured Employer’s Guaranty Find for uninsured claims.
Second, some employers may avoid filing a claim in hopes that you just go away. In essence, they are ignoring you. What they are trying to do is avoid workers’ compensation insurance rate increases. That is not your problem, it is their problem.
Third, your employer thinks you injury is not severe enough. That is not their call to make.
Fourth, they think you are faking or a trouble maker. Again, not relevant to the benefits and rights you are afforded under workers’ comp laws. They aren’t the ones hurt, you are!
Fifth, specifically, with small employers, they simply do not understand the law. The important note here is, ignorance of the law is not relevant. You have rights and benefits as an injured worker that you are entitled to under the law.
Sixth, they know you have a pre-existing condition and they try and convince you that you can’t file a claim because of that pre-existing condition. Aggravation of a pre-existing condition is a separate and distinct work injury.
Seventh, your employer may simply be trying to bully you into not filing a claim. Do not let them bully you. You didn’t ask to get hurt.
Your employer MUST report a work injury.
The important thing to know is that your employer is required by Pennsylvania law to report your work injury immediately after you report it. Work injuries should be reported within seven to ten days of the occurrence of the work injury. From there, the employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier 21 days to accept or deny the claim. Failure to do so is a violation of the Workers’ Compensation Act and may lead to penalties. Reporting a work injury is not a choice for an employer.
How to protect yourself when injured at work.
First, if your employer refuses to report a work injury or refuses to provide you documentation regarding the work injury, that should enough to raise an alarm with you. Take notes and write down the names of individuals you spoke with at the employer about your work injury. Write down the person’s name you reported the injury to when it occurred. Next, Mooney Law offers absolutely FREE consultations. Call and we can talk.
If your employer denies your work injury, you must litigate your claim to receive benefits. You must file claim petition which starts the litigation process. It is also important to note that you have statutory deadlines to file a claim petition. If you are denied, you will not be paid benefits and your medical care will not be paid without filing a claim petition. Call Mooney Law for a FREE consultation, so we can file the claim petition and fight for and protect your entitlement to benefits.
Workers’ compensation wage loss and medical benefits are extremely important for injured workers. Mooney Law has litigated thousands of claims and recovered tens of millions of dollars on behalf of injured worker throughout Pennsylvania and Maryland. We stand ready to fight for you! Call today for a FREE consultation at 717-200-HELP or 717-632-4656. You can also email us at email@example.com. Finally, you can visit our firm website at Mooney4Law.com.