In most cases, if you are injured on the job in Maryland, you likely have a valid workers’ compensation claim. Your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier may seek to deny coverage by arguing that you were, in fact, an independent contractor rather than an employee. Alternatively, the insurer may insist that you waited too long to file a claim. The insurance company may assert that your injury was caused or exacerbated by a pre-existing condition.
On the other hand, the workers’ compensation carrier may accept your claim for compensation to cover medical bills and replace lost wages — but then proceed to put up roadblocks. For example, the insurer may insist that you see a doctor chosen for you, rather than letting you work with your own doctor. A physician selected by the insurer may assert that you are ready to go back to work before you feel well enough to do so.
Types of Injuries Covered by Workers’ Compensation For a work-related injury
You may be eligible for compensation for any of the injuries listed below: Preexisting conditions that the workplace accelerates or aggravates. Examples may include a back injury, even though you don’t notice the pain from the injury until later. Injuries caused during breaks, lunch hours, and work-sponsored activities (such as a company picnic), and at-work injuries caused by company facilities, such as a chair in the company lunchroom. Diseases such as lung cancer, if contracted by exposure to toxins at work as a result of normal working conditions. Injuries resulting from mental and physical strain brought on by increased work duties or work-related stress. In some states, this includes employees who develop a disabling mental condition because of the demands of the job and a supervisor’s constant harassment.
Here are the first steps you should take if you are injured on the job:
Report the injury to your employer – If possible, report the injury in writing and keep a copy of the report for personal records.
Complete a claim form – No matter how your employer learns of the incident, it must offer you a claim form immediately. Until this claim form is completed, the employer has no obligation to provide you benefits. Make sure the claim form is filled out completely and specifically. Keep a copy of your completed claim form. Once your employer receives your claim form, it is then the employer’s responsibility to immediately notify its workers’ compensation insurance company and arrange medical assistance for you.
File the claim as soon as possible – If you are seeking to claim workers’ compensation benefits, you should do so quickly. Any delay on your part could lead to potential snags or delays in receiving benefits. Immediately reporting injuries and filing a claim as soon as you decide to seek compensation increases the likelihood that benefits will begin quickly.
If a dispute should arise regarding the claim, you can seek help from the workers’ compensation lawyer at the Law Offices of Anthony C. DePastina # 443-275-2925, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.
Additionally, if your accident is not covered by workers’ compensation (for example, if you are an independent contractor or because the company does not have workers’ compensation insurance), you may be entitled to bring legal action against someone for whom you were working, just as you could file a claim against any other person who caused you personal injury. In such a case, you may be able to recover compensation that you couldn’t recover in a workers’ compensation claim, including attorney fees, compensation for pain and suffering, and punitive damages (damages to punish the party who injured you).