After you’ve been hurt on the job and can’t work, you’re eager to get the benefits you’re entitled to receive through workers’ compensation. You can learn more about the process of filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits below. If your workers’ compensation claim has been denied, or you have any additional questions about the California workers’ compensation process, contact the dedicated and professional Whittier workers’ compensation lawyers at Hanning & Sacchetto for a consultation.
How does the workers’ compensation claim process work?
When you’re hurt on the job in California, it’s important to act fast in beginning the workers’ compensation claim process to ensure that you don’t lose the right to file a claim. Here’s what you can expect when filing a workers’ compensation claim:
- Immediately after the injury, tell your employer that you’ve been hurt. You should receive a Workers’ Compensation Claim Form, or DWC-1 form, within 24 hours of reporting your injury. The claim process will only begin once you’ve completed this form. Verbal reports of injuries will not be considered official notice of an injury.
- Your employer has two weeks from the date you submit your claim form to decide whether to reject, accept, or delay a decision on your claim. By putting the claim on delay, your employer has 90 days to make a decision about the claim. During that 90 days, they’ll be obligated to provide up to $10,000 for any of the worker’s medical costs. They won’t, however, be required to pay any portion of the worker’s wages while they’re off work.
- The injured worker cannot choose just any doctor to provide treatment for their work-related injury. The employer has the right to choose the doctor for at least the first appointment. Depending on the employer, the worker will either have the right to choose a different doctor from the employer’s Medical Provider Network, or they’ll be able to choose any doctor who accepts workers’ compensation insurance after the first 30 days of their medical treatment.
- In the first 90 days after a claim, the workers’ compensation insurer may request that the worker undergo a Panel Qualified Medical Evaluation (PQME). These evaluations may result in a denial of the worker’s claim. Many workers choose to speak with an attorney before their PQME to learn more about their rights.
Finding legal help from someone who understands the California workers’ compensation claim process
While your employer has a duty to pay for your medical care and provide a portion of the wages you’ve lost after you’re hurt on the job, it isn’t always easy to get workers’ compensation benefits. You may need experienced legal help—like the help that you’ll receive from the dedicated and professional Whittier workers’ compensation lawyers at Hanning & Sacchetto. Our seasoned California workers’ compensation benefits attorneys can help you get the money you need when you’re hurt, so that you can stop worrying about how your bills will be paid and focus on getting better. Contact our southern California offices after a workplace injury to get an evaluation of your workers’ compensation case.
For aggressive and trustworthy legal help after an on-the-job injury in Southern California, contact the workers’ compensation lawyers at Hanning & Sacchetto at 562-698-6446, with offices in Pomona, Irvine, Whittier, Glendora, Ontario, and Arcadia.