Top Challenges in Obtaining Workers’ Compensation for Nurses

Understanding the nuances of workers’ compensation laws can be overwhelming, particularly when you’re a nurse dealing with a job-related injury or illness.

Top Challenges in Obtaining Workers' Compensation for Nurses

Here are some challenges that you might encounter while trying to obtain nurse workers’ compensation benefits:

Timely Notification and Documentation

Ensuring that every work-related injury is reported to your employer promptly and accurately documented can be challenging. When you’re dealing with a work-related injury, sometimes the last thing on your mind is paperwork, and you’re focused on simply taking care of your health. 

Unfortunately, you only have 30 days to notify your employer of your injury, so this is something you have to think about as soon as possible. 

Handling Pre-existing Conditions

If you have pre-existing conditions, insurance companies sometimes wrestle against providing benefits citing those as the reason behind your current illness or injury instead of workplace situations.

Calculating compensation in these cases can be complicated because not all your issues can be attributed directly to job duties. 

Establishing That The Injury is Work Related

You must prove conclusively that your injury or trauma resulted directly from employment factors rather than personal lifestyle choices or activities outside working hours.

To establish that an injury is work related, certain steps must be followed. Some of the most important things you can do to prove this injury at work includes the following: 

Immediate Reporting

Document and report any incident right away to your employer. Giving a detailed account of what happened can help link the accident to your work.

Don’t Get Caught Up In Workplace Politics

Navigating workplace politics while dealing with a workers’ compensation claim can be a balancing act, especially for nurses. 

You may face discouragement or fear retaliation from coworkers or management in response to filing your claim. It’s vital that you understand the anti-retaliation protections are in place to protect you.

Regardless of what you think your colleagues or supervisors will think of you, it’s essential that you get the treatment you need and deserve after suffering a workplace injury. Don’t get caught up in what may or may not happen; just take care of yourself.

Collect Medical Records

Obtain all necessary medical records related to your injury, as this  can help corroborate your claims that the injury occurred at work. If necessary, a doctor’s expert testimony can help establish causation as well. 

Eye-Witness Accounts

If possible, gather contact information for all witnesses who saw your injury. This could include co-workers, patients, or other visitors.  

Dealing With Delayed Claims or Denials

Dealing with delayed claims or denials in the workers’ compensation process can be challenging for a couple reasons:

  1. Prolonged Procedure: A delay in the processing of your claim could mean a prolonged period without wage replacement benefits, resulting in financial stress.
  2. Dealing With Appeals: Arguing against a denial means gearing up for the appeals procedure, which demands more paperwork and navigating bureaucratic red tape.

Understanding these challenges will empower you in navigating the process of obtaining workers’ compensation benefits. 

Regardless of any reservations or concerns you may have, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Familiarizing yourself with local laws surrounding worker’s compensation will ensure that you get the benefits you deserve. If you need help, don’t hesitate to contact Lightfoot Law to schedule a free consultation.