Ten Things to Do if You Suffer a Work Related Injury

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  • Report the injury to your employer.  There is no legal requirement of how you should accomplish this.  But your employer may have requirements.  Follow those.  If you are not seeking immediate medical attention, try to make sure your report is lodged in writing, with someone responsible, so it doesn’t get forgotten.
  • Tell your doctor how you were injured.  This will help document that you were injured on the job, and provide your doctor with the information necessary to trigger his filing a claim on your behalf with the Industrial Commission of Arizona.
  • Go to your employer’s designated physician, if required.  Your employer has a right to designate a physician you must see, one time, at the start of your injury.  After that, you are free to see a doctor of your choosing.  However, if you go back to your employer’s designated physician, for a second visit, this will count as your election to make that your chosen doctor. (Some self insureds have the right to designate your treatment with their selected physicians for the entire course of treatment.  If in doubt, ask.)
  • Get the name and phone number of any witnesses to your injury.  That way, if there is any dispute about where or how your injury occurred, you can provide this information to your attorney.
  • Go to an emergency room if your injury requires urgent attention.
  • See a specialist.  Workers’ compensation does not require progressing through a primary care physician. If the only physician you know is a PCP, request a referral to an appropriate specialist as soon as possible.  In general, this will assist your chances for maximum rapid recovery.
  • Cooperate with the insurance representative.  Remember, the insurance company’s job is to investigate your claim, so that they can provide benefits.  They may want to take your recorded statement, interview witnesses, or get copies of your medical records related to the injury.  These are all normal procedures.
  • Tell the truth.  This should be self-evident.
  • If a nurse case manager is assigned to your case, ask to be present and included in every contact the NCM has with your doctor(s).
  • Get legal help if you have any questions.  Many lawyers will speak to you for free.  They can advise you if representation is necessary or not, or when in the future you may want to contact them again.

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