One of the most important parts of your workers’ compensation claim is the beginning.
Immediately reporting your injury and making sure all the correct forms are filed can help to try to ensure that your claim is accepted. So how do you go about filing a claim?
Report the Injury to Your Employer
As soon as you are aware that you have been injured at work you should inform your supervisor. Let them know the specifics of how, when, and where you were injured. Let them know about every body part that was injured. Fill out an accident report if your employer offers one, and if they don’t, write out a description of the accident and give it to your employer. This is important because insurance companies can use incomplete accident reports as a reason to deny all or part of a claim. We know. We have seen them use this denial tactic many times. Be detailed about how the injury occurred – particularly noting any unusual circumstances (falling, slipping, etc.).
File a Form 18 with the NC Industrial Commission
It is your responsibility to file your claim with the North Carolina Industrial Commission.
Do not assume that your employer will file your claim with the NC Industrial Commission for you.
To file your claim, you will need to complete a Form 18, which can be found on the Industrial Commission’s website.
Form 18 should be submitted to the Industrial Commission and to your employer within 30 days of your injury.
Include all the requested information, and again, be specific about how the injury occurred noting any unusual circumstances. Include the specific body parts involved. Body parts that are not included may be denied for treatment by the insurance company.
Mail or fax this form to the Industrial Commission at the address or fax number listed on the form. Make copies and give one to your employer. This form is what starts the ball rolling on your claim.
The Industrial Commission will send you an I.C. File Number for your case. The employer/insurer is then notified of a 30-day deadline by which to file a responsive form accepting or denying your claim.
There are a lot of moving parts to dealing with a workers’ compensation claim, and if not done correctly and within the timeframe required, your claim can become complex quickly – and it can even be denied.
Get a Free Case Evaluation From NC Workers’ Comp Lawyers
Notifying your employer and the Industrial Commission and filing a Form 18 is just the tip of the iceberg. If you are concerned about completing the form or dealing with the insurance company, contact us or call 1-866-900-7078. Don’t wait until the clock runs out. If your employer has no notice of the injury, the insurance company can likely use that as a reason to deny your claim when it otherwise might potentially have been accepted.
P.S. if you think it is too expensive to hire a lawyer to help you, learn more about our contingency fee.2 You may be surprised at the long-term consequences of not hiring an attorney.