How should a workers’ compensation claim be handled? Let’s face it, you are a business owner and good at what you do, not a medical clinic but you want to take care of your employees. Here are a few protocols that should be followed when an injury or illness has occurred on the job:
Workers’ Compensation Claims Best Practices for Employers:
- Have a written work comp reporting practice in place or make it part of your handbook that requires immediate reporting of any work injury or illness.
- Establish a plan that provides prompt medical attention to any injured employee. If the injury is an emergency take them immediately to the emergency room. Most injuries are not emergencies and can be treated at a clinic. The best clinics are those that are affiliated with hospitals. In Utah the clinics associated with the University of Utah or Intermountain Healthcare will provide the best care. Employees who are referred to these clinics will be much less likely to be referred onto a personal injury attorney which can escalate the costs for you and the insurance company dramatically.
- Claims should be reported to the insurance carrier the same day if possible regardless of their severity. Prompt reporting allows the adjustor to mitigate the claim and has shown to result in overall claims costs. Insurance companies also have nurses on call that can help provide valuable advice and care over the phone.
- Investigate the incident with written statements from the employee(s) and witnesses. This will help prevent future claims and help control the cost of the claim as well.
- Communicate – with your employee so they know what to expect and explain the claims process. If an employee is left “out of the loop” and get frustrated, they are more likely to contact an attorney. Working with the insurance adjustor Let them know the plan to get them back to work as soon as they are ready.
- Return to work early programs have many benefits and can reduce the overall size of the claim. Work with the insurance adjustor to help an employee return to work even if it’s with modified duties.
You can refer to your company’s website for additional resources and to file a claim online:
Auto Owners: Workers Compensation Claims – Auto-Owners Insurance
State Auto: FNOL (stateauto.com)
A company’s best resource are its employees and you have the responsibility to take care of them while on the job. For more information regarding workers’ compensation coverage click or call a knowledgeable Anderson Insurance Agent today.