No matter where you work, the potential for a workplace injury exists.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 2.6 million workplace injuries and illnesses occurred in 2021. If you join those statistics, your next step involves filing a workers’ compensation claim. Unfortunately, claims get denied for three main reasons.
Paperwork gets filed late
In Virginia, you must report the injury to your employer within 30 days of the incident. After that, you have two years to file a claim. While it may seem like plenty of time, some injuries do not show up right away. Along with ensuring you do not miss the deadline, thoroughly go over the paperwork. One small clerical error may lead to a denial.
Employer disputes the event
Your employer may have a different version of the events that led to the incident. For your claim to get validated, your employee has to agree to your statement. While you want to get witness statements, avoid talking to other people about the incident as different versions of the story or details getting left out might give an employer room for dispute. In some instances, an employer may argue that the injury happened due to other reasons.
Injury relates to a pre-existing condition
If you have an old injury, the insurance company may deny the claim. Even though you may have had a back injury from five years that healed, it may get viewed as a contributing factor for a new work-related injury.
Even if your claim gets denied, you still have the option to make an appeal.