In order to be a responsible employer for your valued team members, you should understand your duties according to the workers’ compensation system in your state—like knowing when to file a workers’ comp claim on behalf of an injured employee.
Your employees are responsible for reporting any work-related injuries to you, but you should in turn report these injuries to your insurance provider (and perhaps to your state workers’ compensation board, depending on where you live).
Understand the process
The workers’ compensation process differs by state, but generally, when an employee is injured at work:
The employee should notify the employer
The employer should notify the insurance provider (and state workers’ compensation board if required) using a “First Report of Injury or Illness” or similar form
The employer should then give the employee a workers’ compensation claim form and written information about their workers’ compensation rights
If the employee chooses to file for workers’ compensation benefits, the employee should complete the workers’ compensation claim form and return it to the employer
The employer should submit the workers’ compensation claim form to the insurance provider on behalf of the employee
Know when to file a claim
As an employer, you should notify your insurer immediately after you’ve become aware of the work-related injury. Further, you typically have 24 hours after your employee has told you about the injury to give your employee a claim form and a notification of their workers’ comp rights.
As for filing the workers’ compensation claim form, employees may have varying time limits to submit the claim (often ranging from 1-3 years). However, as an employer, you should pass the employee’s claim form along to your insurance provider as soon as possible.
Stay within the time limits
Successful employers and business owners value their team members and their bottom line. When you adhere to workers’ compensation time limits for employers, you promote the health of your team members and your company. This is because accurate reporting helps streamline the investigation process, save you money on claims, reduce the potential for lawsuits, and show employees you value their safety and wellness. Further, it keeps you in compliance with state workers’ compensation laws.
Next, you should learn about other ways workers’ comp benefits you as an employer and about your responsibilities for creating a safe workplace. And remember, every situation is different and state workers’ compensation laws vary considerably, so be sure to do your research and speak with a trusted advisor
Thanks for reading! Please note that this content is intended for educational purposes only. As laws change regularly, you should refer to your state legislation and/or an advisor for specific legal counsel. If you’re a small business owner, learn more about workers’ compensation or check your current rate in 3 minutes.