Most people, including California residents, want to do their best while working. Wanting to make a good impression, many work long hours and perform difficult, often dangerous and sometimes tedious tasks. Which is why a workplace injury may set them back both emotionally and financially-emotionally because they do not want to lose out on a project and financially because medical bills could end up being very high. However, workers' compensation is one way injured workers can get the compensation they deserve after a work-related accident with less stress.
However, when a workers' compensation claim is denied, it can leave the injured worker confused and frustrated. Firstly, because they do not understand why the claim was denied-they were after all injured and the injury took place at the workplace. Secondly, because they do not know what the next step is.
To answer the first question, if the injury was not reported to the supervisor or the claim was not filed within a specific time, the claim could be denied automatically without even going into the merits of the situation. A claim could also be denied if the employer disputes the claim, stating it took place outside of work or if there is not enough evidence that the injury is work-related. If the injury is not compensable or no medical treatment was sought, workers' compensation benefits could be denied.
There are also a number of other reasons why a claim could be denied and it is important to closely examine one's case and understand what happened. Denied claims have the ability to overwhelm an already suffering injured worker, but it should not deter them, as legal options such as appealing the decision, as discussed in next week's post, are available. An experienced attorney may be able to help injured workers understand and exercise their rights in a timely manner.