Missouri Work Accidents 101: Filing a Claim and other Information you Need to Know

In launching our Missouri Workers' Compensation Lawyer Blog, we have reported about some of what you need to know when dealing with a work injury in Springfield are elsewhere in Southern Missouri.

Hiring a lawyer, determining whether you have a claim, and obeying strict time limits can all be critical to your ability to collect lost wages and payment for medical expenses and/or disability in the wake of a serious work accident or injury in Missouri.
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How do I file a workers' compensation claim?

1) Report your injury to your employer immediately. Failure to report an injury within 30 days may jeopardize you ability to collect benefits.

2) Seek medical treatment. The employer and its insurer is required to pay for such care -- including prescriptions and medical devices. The employer and its insurer has the right to choose the physician and healthcare provider. However an employee can select his or her own physician at personal expense.

3) Travel: The employer is required to reimburse an employee for mileage for travel of up to 250 miles for treatment.

4) In addition to payment for medical treatment, employee is entitled to temporary total disability benefits and permanent partial or permanent total disability benefits.

What if I am unable to return to work? In the event that your injuries prevent you from returning to work, you will be eligible for disability benefits. Either "temporary," "permanent partial" or "permanent total."

What is disability rating? The state has determined payout schedules for various injuries. Here is a schedule for permanent partial disability. The numbers indicate the length of payouts for various injuries, from 8 weeks for the tip of a toe to 400 weeks for an entire person. A doctor will decide whether you are eligible for permanent total disability or permanent partial disability.

5)Resolving your case: Once your case has gone through the hearing process and an award is issued by an administrative law judge, you have the right to file an application for review within 20 days.

6) Appealing your Decision: An appeal of the final award is to the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission. A second appeal may be requested after final award by the commission. This is done by filing a notice of appeal to the Missouri Court of Appeals in a timely manner.