New Jersey workers are often injured at work, whether the injuries result while performing their job duties, such as a fall accident from a ladder while fixing a roof or a slip and fall accident walking to the bathroom. It is important that injured workers report their accidents as soon as possible.
Pursuant to New Jersey workers’ comp law, injured employees/workers must report work related injuries to their employers within a specified time period. If they do not report their accidents on time, the employers may deny their workers’ comp claims. The employers may argue that the accidents occurred outside of work; thus, workers’ comp benefits do no apply. Therefore, workers may not be able to receive medical treatment and out of work benefits.
New Jersey workers’ comp law requires injured employees/workers to report their accidents/injuries within 90 days of injury. However, if notice is given after 14 or 30 days of an accident, an employer may question why the accident was not reported sooner. In addition, the employee may not receive benefits if the employer can show that they were prejudiced in some way. If accidents/injuries are reported after 90 days, injured employees/workers will not receive workers’ comp benefits.
The mistake many employees/workers make is that they do not report their accidents/incidents because they do not think they require medical treatment at the time. For example, a UPS driver is loading up his truck with packages. The last box he lifts is quite heavy, and he twists his back as he lifts it. He feels some pain in his back, but it isn’t excruciating pain. He thinks that the pain will go away. When he gets home that night, he takes some Tylenol and puts a heat pack on his back. A week goes by, the pain does not go away. In fact, it gets worse, and he needs to see a doctor.
He then reports to his employer that he hurt his back the week before and needs medical treatment. Though he is within the 90 days of the reporting requirement, he may have a difficult time receiving medical benefits at first because he did not report his incident when it happened. His employer may argue that he hurt his back outside work.
Therefore, it is a good idea for employees/workers to report an incident or injury even if they don’t think they are seriously hurt. This way, the employees/workers protect themselves and will not face an uphill battle if they do need to file workers’ comp claims.
FREE Case Evaluations After Getting Injured at Work
Philip T. Ciprietti offers free consultations to injured individuals and will explore all of the legal options an injured worker may have after a work related accident. 800.281.8695