If you’ve suffered an injury while at work and are filing a workers’ compensation claim, having accurate and thorough medical documentation is crucial to getting the best settlement. Without evidence to document how and when your accident occurred, you can easily fall victim to having your workers’ comp claim denied.
Don’t let what seems like a small error cost you the settlement you deserve. Find out everything you need to know about required medical documents for workers’ comp from the Arizona workers’ compensation lawyers at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys.
What Kind of Medical Documentation Do I Need?
You should seek medical assistance as soon as possible after being injured on the job, whether you visit the emergency room, a walk-in clinic, or your regular doctor. This is important for two reasons: the first, and most important, is that you get the treatment you need in a timely fashion. The second is because the sooner you are medically evaluated and can obtain evidence of your diagnosis, the more credibility you’ll have when filing for workers’ comp.
Worker’s and Physician’s Report of Injury
The Worker’s and Physician’s Report of Injury form is one of several important medical documents for workers’ comp claims. You should let your doctor know that your injury was work-related and either request a copy of this form or bring a blank copy of your own for them to fill out. The top half of this form is yours to fill out. It asks for basic information, such as your name, address, date of birth, work details, and a brief description of where and how the injury or disability occurred.
The second part of the form is to be completed by your physician. This is an initial report, and will ask for information about how your doctor treated you, whether any diagnostic tools such as X-rays were used, whether hospitalization occurred, and whether they noted any relevant pre-existing conditions.
The Worker’s and Physician’s Report of Injury must be filed by your medical provider with the Industrial Commission of Arizona (ICA) within 8 days of treating your work injury. They must also send a copy of the form to your employer and your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier.
Worker’s Report of Injury
Alternatively, you can file the Worker’s Report of Injury. This form is a questionnaire to be filled out by the injured worker or their legal representative.
It asks more detailed questions about your workplace, including how many hours you work each day/week, the date, address, and time the accident occurred, whether you stopped working immediately, whether there were witnesses, and what kind of machinery, if any, was involved in the injury.
It also asks whether or not you were treated for your injuries and if so, the name of the provider who treated you. The Worker’s Report of Injury form must be filed with the ICA within one year of the injury, either by mail or by fax.
After you or your doctor have filed either the Worker’s and Physicians’ Report of Injury or the Worker’s Report of Injury and your employer’s insurance carrier has received a copy, the insurance company will have 21 days to review the claim and either accept or deny it.
Additional Medical Documents for Workers’ Comp Claims
It is very likely that your employer’s insurance carrier will request additional medical records from your doctor to verify your diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis. Understandably, many employees may feel that providing access to these documents may violate their privacy.
The good news is that although the insurance carrier will require access to your medical records, they will only have access to the particular medical records pertaining to your workplace injury. This helps protect employees’ sensitive medical information. If you have additional concerns about how your medical information may be used, a qualified attorney can help you ensure that your privacy is protected.
Do I Need a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer?
If your Arizona workers’ comp claim has been denied, or if you’re dealing with workers’ compensation retaliation, you need steadfast and experienced legal representation to get the compensation you’re entitled to. If you are facing particularly debilitating injuries, such as a traumatic brain injury, paralysis, or burn injuries, an attorney can help you gather all the necessary medical documents for workers’ comp and guide you through every step of the process.
Schedule a free consultation with a Phoenix or Tucson workers’ compensation lawyer today by calling one of the numbers below. You can also request your free case review online, or connect with a representative right now using our LiveChat feature.