Tag Archives: work injury

Work Comp Tips

Minnesota Work Comp Tips to Remember

If you are have been injured on the job, or are suffering from a disease caused by your workplace conditions, then you are most likely looking into workplace compensation. Workplace compensation will provide you with financial relief for your medical expenses and lost wages when you need to take time off work to recover from an injury or illness on the job. It sounds simple enough right? However, in most cases, it is not. Workplace compensation claims are actually incredibly tricky due to the unethical behavior of insurance companies. Below we have listed some tips to help you get the compensation you deserve when dealing with Minnesota workers comp claims. Keep in mind that a MN workers comp lawyer can also provide you with assistance to overcoming the common obstacles surrounding workers compensation claims.

Injured at the Workplace?

Many companies will require their employees to fill out workers compensation sheets for everything, from a slip and fall to a paper cut. This may seem tedious but you never know when an injury from work could affect you down the road. A minor slip and fall could result in extreme back pain or problems a few days later. It is important to report any injury, no matter what.

Filing for Workers Compensation

Filing for workers compensation involves a lot of rules, regulations and paperwork. Many employees are stressed enough as is without the mounding piles of paperwork and the restrictions from the insurance company. When it comes to filing for workers compensation, the best tip we can give you is this – with the right legal advice, you are ensuring you are getting the workers comp you deserve. Getting help from a Minnesota worker’s comp attorney will ensure that you get the claim right the first time around. It will also reduce your risk of making any mistakes or being denied altogether. Furthermore, you can be confident that you are getting the amount you deserve. Some things are best left to the experts.

Medical Benefits and Out of Pocket Reimbursements

While on workers compensation, you may notice that you are paying a lot of the bills yourself. Furthermore, there will be additional expenses incurred that are not originally covered by the insurance company. You can still claim these back through out of pocket reimbursements. Here are some tips to make this process as smooth as possible

  • Keep all your receipts for any out of pocket expenses such as prescriptions. Store all receipts in a file and make copies just in case they fade
  • Keep track of all mileage used going to medical appointments
  • Double check that the doctor and the insurance company are corresponding and that the paperwork is being sent to the insurer
  • Provide your employer with regular updates about your progress, your medical treatments and your restrictions at work.

Our Minnesota workers compensation lawyers can assist you with any medical claims and legal complications that may arise in the above situations.  If you are currently battling with workers compensation, contact the Law Firm of Heimerl & Lammers for a free consultation.

Workplace Injury

4 Things to Remember if You Suffer an Injury at Work

If you are one of the unfortunate individuals that suffer an injury at work, the following are some good reminders:

  1. Report your work injury immediately. If you suffer a work injury, even if you think it is minor, make sure you protect your statutory rights and report your injury. Generally, employees should report their injury to a supervisor within 14 days of the injury. Don’t be afraid to report your injury. It is against the law for employers to retaliate against workers who seek workers’ compensation benefits. Once you report your work injury, the employer has the responsibility for initiating a workers’ compensation claim.
  2. Seek appropriate medical treatment. Trust yourself and your body. If you feel like you need medical treatment, you should seek medical treatment. Sometimes, being “Minnesota-strong” at the expense of necessary medical consultation or treatment can end up hurting you in the long run, so if you need medical attention, be sure to seek it.
  3. Know if your workers’ compensation claim is accepted or denied. There are usually two ways employees are informed whether or not their claim is accepted or denied:
    1. You should receive a Notice of Insurer’s Primary Liability Determination (NOPLD) from your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer. This is a standard form and will have a box checked on it that indicates whether the claim is accepted or denied.
    2. If you seek medical treatment and the workers’ compensation insurer is denying the claim, your medical provider may inform you that the insurer is not paying. This may (though not necessarily) be an indication that the claim is denied.
  4. Know when to contact an attorney. It is not always necessary to have an attorney if you suffer a work injury and receive workers’ compensation benefits. Many work injuries are accepted and treatment and other benefits are paid without any problems. However, you should consider contacting an attorney if:
    1. Your claim is denied
    2. You think your claim is denied
    3. You are required/asked to attend an Independent Medical Examination (IME)
    4. You think you are not getting all the benefits to which you are entitled

Hopefully, you never suffer an injury at work. However, please be aware that you have rights as an injured worker, and be sure to protect those rights.

Work Injury Doctor

Does My Employer Get to Choose My Doctor After a Work Injury?

If you have had a workplace injury and your employer sent you to a doctor they chose, it is important that you act quickly to obtain a doctor who is on your side. Your doctor and his or her diagnosis lay the foundation for your workers’ compensation claim.

This means that having the right doctor can be the difference between getting your medical bills and wage loss paid or getting your claim denied.

Such an important decision should not be left up to your employer. Employers will try to protect themselves from workers’ compensation claims to avoid increased insurance premiums. A successful workers’ compensation claim may also draw attention to unsafe work environments, which could result in workplace safety penalties. Ultimately, your employer has many reasons to try to protect the company and will not have your best interest at heart when choosing a doctor.

Know Your Right to Choose

Under Minnesota law, employees have the right to choose their physician if they are not part of a managed care plan. We often see employers that tell their employees that they have to go to their doctor or else they don’t get benefits. This is simply incorrect.

There is nothing more personal and important than your physical health, and your employer should not be given the right to make these very personal decisions. Almost as important as your physical health is your financial health. Most of us cannot afford to get stuck with thousands of dollars in medical bills and weeks of lost wages. Without the right doctor, both your physical and financial health could be devastated. If your employer is pressuring you to see a doctor they selected, you are will be far better off choosing your own doctor.

However, before you make a change to a new doctor, you must first make sure that changing your primary physician complies with the workers’ compensation rules.

Rules and 60-Day Deadline

Minnesota workers’ compensation requires employees follow the workers’ compensation rules. Under these rules, a doctor becomes your “primary” doctor after you have seen him or her only twice. Once you have established a primary doctor, you must be careful to properly follow the administrative rules when changing doctors.

If you change doctor without following these rules, your employer may no longer have to pay for your medical bills! Here are the basics of what you need to know and additional resources:

Employees can change their primary physician one time within 60 days from starting their medical treatment. However, after 60 days, it is much harder to change physicians, and even impossible in some circumstances. For example, the rules require employees to get employer, insurer, or judge approval to change their physician after 60 days. To learn more about these rules, see Minnesota Administrative Rule 5221.0430.

If your employer or their insurer is pushing you to a doctor or clinic of their choosing, we highly suggest immediately seeking the advice of an attorney for two reasons. First of all, as mentioned, there is a time component involved here and an attorney can assess where you stand and possibly get a doctor change approved even after the deadline. Secondly, in our experience an employer recommended doctor is a major red flag. Employers and work comp insurance companies who try to influence medical care tend to be the kind of companies who will do everything they can to deny you the benefits you have coming to you.  Therefore, it’s better to have someone on your side as early as possible.

Slip and Fall

What Injuries Qualify for Workers Compensation?

Any injury, illness, or condition that occurs at work or because of what you do at work qualifies for workers compensation in Minnesota. This also covers injuries that gradually develop over time.

If you have a broken bone due to a fall or something heavy hitting you, you may be covered by workers’ compensation laws. In addition, if you are responsible for engaging in a repetitive task, such as cutting meat or typing, this may cause strain. You may be able to receive money if you have a condition.

You need to keep the following in mind: even if you did not receive the first injury at work, you may still be owed money. An injury that gets worse at work may qualify you for workers’ compensation. For example, if you have a bum knee that is aggravated due to walking and lifting, you might be eligible.

Toxins, pollutants, and asbestos can cause unseen harm. Unsafe working conditions can cause chronic harm that lasts for decades. Lung, heart, and other internal injuries are covered by workers’ compensation laws.

Minnesota Law

The state of Minnesota protects its citizens’ mental health. Our laws provide compensation when:

  • Mental stress causes a physical injury
  • Physical trauma causes a mental injury
  • Mental stress causes a mental injury

Certain emotional issues, such as PTSD, can make you eligible to receive benefits under the law. You should keep in mind that mental stress causing a physical injury may be a little bit more difficult to prove. The same is true with mental stress causing a mental injury.

For example, if a cop or firefighter pulls someone out of a burning building, that might scar them mentally. In certain circumstances, they will be able to receive workers’ compensation. Other situations are not as likely to make people qualified to receive workman’s comp for mental injuries.

Reaching out to a lawyer will help you understand if your injury makes you eligible.

Fall at Work

5 Steps to Take if Injured on the Job in Minnesota

Work injuries happen all the time. Although in many instances you may walk away with something as small as a scrape on your leg or a cut on your finger, in other instances the damages may be more severe. Every month, more than 8,000 people are hurt in work-related accidents in Minnesota and of these 8,000 people, many are forced to go on workers compensation while they recover from the accident. If you have been injured on the job or are suffering from an illness due to a workplace incident, then you need to discuss your concerns and compensation with an experienced Minnesota work injury attorney right away.

Work Injury Rules and Regulations

Many people will assume that if they caused a workplace related accident, then they are not entitled to workers compensation benefits. This is not the case. No matter who caused the accident, no matter how silly it may have been, you are still entitled to workers compensation under the Minnesota laws.

It is also important to note that many employers will attempt to persuade their employees not to file a claim if they are injured at work. If you are in this situation, it is important to contact a Minnesota workers compensation lawyer and report this unethical behavior. You are not only protecting your legal rights, but also the rights of the other employees of your company.

Injured on the Job

If you are injured on the job, there are certain precautions you need to take every time. Below we have listed what to do when injured on the job:

  • As soon as you hurt yourself, report your injury to a supervisor or your employer. You need to notify your supervisor right away about the injury. If you don’t, then you may lose your ability to claim workers compensation. Even if the injury seems minor at the time, report it. After all, some injuries do not become painful until a day, a week, or even a month after the fact.
  • Fill out Injury Report in the workplace. You will need to fill out an injury report in your workplace. Ask for a copy which will be used when filing a claim.
  • Get medical attention. It is important to see a doctor right away and to explain that the injury occurred at work. Your doctor will put this in your medical records which will later be used during your workers compensation claims.
  • Keep records of all your claims and expenses, no matter how minor they seem. Make copies in case the receipts are damaged or fade.
  • Always let your employer know what is happening with your injury. This will ensure that your relationship remains intact. However, if you are noticing that you are being mistreated by an employer due to an injury at the workplace, then you need to report this harassment and retaliation. It is against the law for employers to treat those who are injured any differently.

And, finally, contact a Minnesota work injury lawyer to ensure that your rights are protected. Insurance companies are known to swindle people out of money and workers compensation insurance companies are no different. The Law Firm of Heimerl and Lammers can protect you against this unjust treatment and ensure you are getting the compensation you deserve.