Types of Settlements
Workers’ compensation pays benefits on injuries that include physical, mental, and traumatic injuries. Additionally, occupational diseases fall into this category. Benefits can be temporary or permanent.
Our workers’ compensation attorney in Long Island, NY provides advice regarding the types of benefits that should be part of your settlement. These include:
- Permanent Partial Disability (PPD): This common disability results from an injury that prevents you from performing required tasks and from working at full capacity.
- Permanent Total Disability (PTD): In order to receive these benefits, you must be completely disabled and unable to return to work.
- Temporary Partial Disability (TPD): Benefits are available if you can work after an injury but have physical restrictions and earn less.
- Temporary Total Disability (TTD): You are entitled to benefits when you are temporarily unable to work. This can occur when your doctor recommends less strenuous tasks, but they are not available at your workplace.
Documenting Injuries for Workers’ Compensation Cases
When filing a Workers’ Compensation claim, it is often common for the victim to only document the most severe injury that occurs from an accident. Often, the victim is so concerned with their fractured bone or back pain, that they forget to document additional injuries sustained. It is in your best interest to document all pain and damage that you sustain as a result of an injury while at work. Undocumented injuries can often be dismissed or thrown away in court. Making sure that all injuries from an accident are recorded will help build a stronger case.
All Injuries Count
Whether you fall off of a ladder or slip and fall, injuries are often more widespread than what hurts the most. Even if you sustain a major injury in one spot, other parts of your body may have also been damaged. You may have landed on your back, but did you hurt your head? Did your elbow smash against the ground too?
When filling out an injury report or other official documents, it is important to document each point of impact and the pain in that area. Swelling, bruising, cuts, and scrapes should all be documented. If an area is impacted or scraped, but there is no visible damage or pain, you should still take note of it. It is possible that you sustained internal damage that is found later.
Informing Your Physician
As mentioned above, you will likely have to see a doctor chosen by your employer. However, your personal physician can provide their own report and will be important to visit in order to help you maintain proper care for your injuries.
It is always important to visit your physician after any major injury, especially if you did not receive emergency medical services. Your doctor will be able to look over your injuries, run tests or call for scans if needed, and more. If you are building a case for workers’ compensation, you will need proper medical documentation of your injuries. Walk your doctor through the events of the injury, and be sure to inform them of each injury sustained. They will formulate their own report, which may be helpful for further treatment. Your doctor’s notes may also be helpful in building your case. Documenting your injuries and pain with your doctor can be an important step for building your Worker’s Compensation case.
Additionally, if you do not go to visit a doctor after your accident, your employer’s insurance company may try to use this as evidence that the injuries were not severe enough. It is important to visit your physician, as well as any specialists they suggest. You should visit your primary care doctor even if you are taken to a hospital as a result of the injury.
Why is Documentation Important?
For the example of falling down a ladder; assume that you bumped your elbow on the floor too. Your injury report does not include that you hit your elbow coming down. 2 weeks later, your physician discovered a fracture in your elbow. From there, it would be difficult to prove that the fracture was from the fall, at least in a legal case. While the elbow impact was not in your report, it may be important for your case. However, by documenting every aspect of the injury when it happens, it will be more likely to link the injury to the accident. Injuries that are not linked to the accident may be dismissed from the case. This means that you might get compensation for your back injury, but not your broken arm. Furthermore, they might mean the difference between approval or dismissal of your case as a whole.