The most important part about a workers’ compensation claim is simply getting it started. However, it is surprisingly easy to notify the correct entities and begin the process. A skilled workers’ compensation attorney could make it even easier for you by being the main line of communication with all relevant parties. If you suffered injuries in a work-related accident, speak with a legal professional about how to apply for a workers’ compensation claim in Elgin.
What Forms Are Required to Apply for Workers’ Comp?
After an accident, a worker must notify their employer, who must then report the injury to the worker’s compensation insurance company. The insurance company will open up a claim for that incident but a worker should also concurrently file an application for adjustment of claim with the Illinois Worker’s Compensation Commission (IWCC). This is where an attorney could be of help.
Some employers will ask that a Form-45 be filled out and sent to the IWCC as well as the insurance company. A lawyer could have the plaintiff fill out an application for adjustment of claim, which will be filed with the IWCC.
Therefore, there are concurrent filings with the employer’s insurance company and with the State of Illinois. Sometimes an employer does not properly report the accident to the insurance carrier. In that instance, the injured worker has the opportunity to file with the carrier.
Information That Must be Provided
Several key pieces of information are required on these forms when applying for workers’ compensation in Elgin. The primary pieces of information to include are:
- The date of the accident
- A rundown of how the accident happened
- Where the accident happened
- Plaintiff’s date of birth
- Plaintiff’s marital status
- Whether the plaintiff has any children under age 18
- Plaintiff’s home address and employer’s address
The insurance company may request and investigate any additional information they would like to see, but it is not required to file a claim. They might want to know if there were any witnesses to the accident, if it occurred in the vicinity of any co-workers or management, and whether it was photographed or recorded in any way. If any of these could back up a worker’s claim, they should pass that on to an attorney who could secure that potential evidence.
The Benefits of Reporting as Soon as Possible
Plaintiffs should not wait long after the accident to file for workers’ comp in Elgin because the details of the incident start to fade, including the date that it occurred. In addition, waiting too long to make the complaint is one of the most common mistakes in workers’ compensation litigation. The longer the gap is in reporting the incident, the more likely it is that an insurance adjuster could successfully argue that the injury did not happen in the way that the plaintiff said it did. The lack of immediate action will be used to bolster their argument.
How Could a Lawyer Help Apply for Benefits?
It is not difficult to apply for benefits through the IWCC, and it is free to do. A lawyer might even be able to fill it out and merely have the plaintiff check it over and sign it. The plaintiff could also have their attorney put pressure on the employer to report the claim to the carrier. Some workplaces have responsible Human Resources departments that know exactly what kind of action is needed, while others are a small business that does not have a foundational process in place.
Find an Attorney to Help You Apply for Workers’ Compensation in Elgin
You have the right to file for benefits after a work-related accident leaves you injured or unable to continue your duties. Your employer cannot deny you the right to report an incident to the IWCC. If you need more information on how to apply for workers’ compensation in Elgin, you should reach out to a lawyer who has experience representing injured workers. Call now to discuss your situation and what to do next.