How to Apply for Workers’ Compensation in Massachusetts
Posted on behalf of Janet, Jenner & Suggs on July 27, 2017 in Workers' Compensation
Workers’ compensation is available for Massachusetts workers who develop a work-related illness or injury. Workers’ compensation provides compensation for lost wages, medical treatment, permanent loss of bodily function and vocational rehabilitation training.
Below, our attorneys explain the procedures that must be followed to apply for workers’ compensation, including the forms that need to be filed.
The Boston workers’ compensation attorneys at Janet, Jenner & Suggs are familiar with all aspects of workers’ compensation law and can help you file an initial claim or an appeal if your claim was denied. Schedule a free legal consultation today.
Reporting a Work Injury
One frequently asked question about workers’ compensation claims is how long workers have to file claims.
Massachusetts allows workers up to four years from the date they became aware of a work-related injury or illness to file a workers’ compensation claim (Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 152 Section 41).
However, the law also states that the workers’ compensation insurance company should be notified as soon as is practical about the injury. This means that failing to report the injury promptly can cause the injured worker to waive his or her right to collect benefits.
Waiting to notify your employer can also increase the likelihood that the insurance company will doubt the validity of your claim and deny it.
You can notify your employer orally or in writing, but a written report is best as it creates a record of your claim.
Make sure your report includes specifics, such as:
- The date the accident occurred
- How you became injured or developed an illness
- The symptoms you are dealing with
Carefully review your written report before submitting it to the employer because these reports are often used as evidence to deny a claim.
Form 101 – Employer’s First Report of Injury/Fatality is the starting point for a workers’ compensation claim. Your employer should complete this form when you have suffered a work-related injury or illness that caused you to miss work for at least five calendar days.
The deadline for your employer to file this form with its workers’ compensation insurer and the Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA) is seven days from the fifth calendar day that you missed work because of the work-related injury or illness.
The insurance company has two weeks from the date it receives this form to investigate the claim and render a decision about whether to provide benefits. It will assess a variety of factors, including:
- Your medical records
- Your work experience and wages
- The results of an independent medical examination
- Your functional capacity
If your employer does not send Form 101 on your behalf, you should send the insurance company a written report of the accident.
You can also complete Form 110 – Employee Claim and send it to the insurance company. Make sure to attach any documentation in support of your claim, such as medical bills and reports.
Your employer is required to have a poster that displays the name and phone number for the workers’ compensation insurance carrier. However, if it does not, you can contact the DIA’s Office of Insurance at 617-626-5480.
Contact One of Our Trusted Attorneys
If you have sustained a personal injury caused by negligence, contact an experienced Boston personal injury attorney from Janet, Jenner & Suggs to discuss your case.
We have helped countless injury victims recover the compensation they deserve, including victims of work injuries. We can help you file your initial report of the accident, navigate the workers’ compensation system and manage any appeals.
Your initial consultation is free and we do not recover attorneys’ fees unless you receive compensation.