Report Your Injury
Minnesota law requires you to report the injury immediately to your employer if you are injured on the job. If you need emergency medical assistance first, you must report the injury as soon as it is possible to do so.
Even if you think the injury is minor at first, you must report the injury right away so the employer and insurer do not use a lack of report against you in the future.
*An employer may successfully deny your claim if you do not report your injury within certain time frames. Please contact Meshbesher & Spence’s workers’ compensation lawyers for advice about reporting an injury to your employer.
If you think your job duties are causing, aggravating, or accelerating your condition and/or symptoms, you must tell your employer as soon as it is “reasonably apparent” that your work duties have resulted in an injury that is likely to cause the following:
- A disability
- Time off work
- Require medical treatment
In cases of repetitive trauma (Gillette) injuries, it can be challenging to know when you may have sustained a work-related injury.
Get Medical Treatment
If you are in need of a medical evaluation, you should be evaluated by a healthcare provider of your choice as soon as possible following your injury to best evaluate the nature of the injury, your ability to work, and what additional medical treatment might be needed.
Be sure to tell your healthcare provider how and when the injury occurred, your symptoms, and why you feel the injury is related to your work. Be prepared to provide your healthcare provider with the contact information for your employer and the workers’ compensation carrier, if known.
Workers’ compensation insurance claims involve a lot of paperwork. We recommend you keep track of all papers related to your injury, such as:
- Benefit checks
- Medical bills
- Work restrictions
- First Report of Injury form, if there is one
Be sure to open all correspondence from the workers’ compensation insurer, your employer, the Department of Labor and Industry (DOLI), and the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH).
Communicate with Your Employer
You should stay in contact with your employer and tell the employer about any medical treatment or work restrictions that result from the injury.
Any time your work restrictions are updated, you should immediately provide your employer an updated copy of your restrictions and keep them advised of any changes in your ability to work. If you are able to return to work, you should promptly let the employer know.
Respond to the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Company
Workers’ compensation insurers are allowed time to complete an investigation of the claim to make an informed decision before admitting or denying the claim.
- In some cases, the insurance claims representative may contact you for additional information regarding your work injury.
- You should communicate with the adjuster in a positive manner and keep notes or copies of any correspondence.
- Failure to respond to the insurance adjuster’s contacts regarding the incident could result in a denial of the claim.
Generally, the insurance company can ask about the injury itself, medical treatment, work restrictions, and medical history related to similar/identical conditions. You will likely be required to sign limited medical authorizations.
What If I Have a Preexisting Condition?
Workers’ compensation in Minnesota is designed to provide benefits to employees who are injured on the job, regardless of whether they have preexisting medical conditions. However, it can be more challenging to receive workers’ compensation benefits if you have a preexisting condition. Discover how our attorneys can help!
Contact Meshbesher & Spence
Get advice on what to expect with your claim and how to handle communication with your employer and insurer. We can advise you as to whether it makes sense to retain an attorney at that time or if you can wait.