A Worker’s Guide to Workers’ Compensation in New Jersey explains that most people employed in New Jersey are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits for job-related injury or occupational illness. You may find it difficult to navigate unfamiliar workers’ compensation rules while you are coping with the stress of injury or disease. We have experience guiding clients through the complex claims system.
A key first step in protecting your workers’ compensation benefits is to report a work-related injury or occupational illness to your employer as soon as possible. You may give this notice orally or in writing, but confiding in your co-worker is not enough to start the process. You must report to your supervisor, a person in authority or a human resources official. In any event, you must provide this notice within 90 days after the incident giving rise to the claim. While you may worry about consequences if you raise a workplace safety issue, your employer cannot penalize you for asserting your legal rights.
Providing timely notice is important to preserving your right to benefits. Your workers’ compensation coverage should help pay the cost of your medical care. In most cases, your employer may require that you visit a specific health care provider. In addition to coverage for medical expenses, you may be able to recover a portion of your lost income. The amount of this potential claim will vary, depending on how long your injury or illness interferes with your ability to work.
To protect and maximize your benefits under the workers’ compensation system, you must understand your rights and responsibilities. To learn more about this topic, please visit our workers’ compensation page.