When you file a workman’s compensation claim, there are many steps in the process of receiving your compensation. With so many steps, the entire process can take time and interrupt your life. Therefore, Workman’s Compensation for New Jersey has compiled this workman’s compensation timeline to help you plan for the long process ahead.
Reporting an Injury
When you are injured on the job, you should inform your employer as soon as possible. You only have a limited amount of time to file a claim before consequences take effect. In New Jersey, you have 90 days to report your injury to your employer. Many large companies have departments that handle their workman’s compensation claims, but if your company does not have one, you can talk to a supervisor, personnel office, or someone else of authority. If you believe you need medical treatment, you should also request to see a doctor as soon as possible. Your report does not need to be in writing, but you will likely be given a form to fill out.
Filing a Claim
According to New Jersey law, an employee has two years to file a claim. If the situation involves an injury or disability that occurs gradually, such as hearing loss or lead poisoning, the employee has two years from the day of their first symptoms arise to file their claim. After receiving the claim, the employer’s insurance company will review the claim. If the claim is accepted, the insurance will pay the medical bills and/or loss of wages. If the claim is not accepted and you believe it should have, you may want to find an attorney through Workman’s Compensation for New Jersey by using the following link: http://workmanscompnewjersey.com/.
After the insurance company receives your claim they have three weeks to send a First Report of Injury form to the Division of Workers’ Compensation. This is New Jersey’s version of L&I1, RM-2, WC-1, and WC-2 forms. If the injured employee heals within a short period of time, the insurance company then has 26 weeks to file a Subsequent Report of Accident. This replaces a WC-3 form in New Jersey. It also informs the Division that the employee has reached maximum medical improvement and is able to return to work as usual. Your employer will receive copies of both of these forms for their records.
With workman’s compensation in New Jersey, there are three different types of benefits for an injured worker: Temporary Disability Benefits, Permanent Partial Benefits, and Permanent Total Benefits. Temporary disability benefits are for injuries that occur and heal quickly such as a sprained wrist or a pulled muscle. If you are unable to work for seven days in New Jersey, you are eligible for temporary disability benefits. You can expect to wait up to two weeks to begin receiving benefits from this type of injury. If there is a delay of 30 or more days, the case is presumed to be unreasonable and your employer may be required to pay up to 25% more of the amount due as well as other fees that occur due to the delay.
If you incur more issues, you may want to find a lawyer through Workman’s Compensation for New Jersey. The attorney they match you with may then advise you to apply for a “Motion for Medical and Temporary Benefits.” This will request a hearing before a Judge for Compensation so that you can explain your case. You can expect to be scheduled for a hearing within 30 days of filing if accepted.
If you experience a permanent total disability such as hearing loss or loss of a limb, you can receive benefits for being no longer able to complete your usual work and responsibilities. If a permanent total disability occurs, you are entitled to payments for up to 450 weeks. After the 450 weeks expire, you may still be entitled to compensation, but the payments may be reduced.
Scheduling a Hearing
If you hire a lawyer from Workman’s Compensation for New Jersey, you can contact them to discuss the tentative date for your hearing with a Judge of Compensation. If you do not hire a lawyer, the Division of Workers’ Compensation will mail you a notice to inform you of your trial date. The notice will usually be received about two weeks before your hearing and the hearing will typically occur within six months of the report being filed.
In New Jersey, if you win your case, your employer’s insurance carrier has 60 days to process and pay your compensation. If this payment is delayed, they may be also be required to pay simple interest. You can expect a receipt for the payment six to eight weeks after the judge’s verdict. If your case involved an uninsured employer, you can expect payment from the Uninsured Employers Fund within 90-120 days after the judge’s decision. During this time, your employer has 45 days to take care of their requirements and compensate the payment.