How Long Does It Take to Get a Workers’ Comp Check?
A straightforward claim can provide you with your first workers’ compensation check in about two weeks to a month.
However, there are several steps you need to take between notifying your employer you have been injured and receiving workers’ comp benefits — which include filing a claim, waiting for a claim investigation, and your claim’s approval or denial. During this process, your medical bills should be paid by your employer or insurer, but you won’t see a check until the claim is approved.
Many things can happen when filing a workers’ compensation claim that may delay your payment or benefits, and an error during this process may result in the denial of your claim altogether. To receive your workers’ compensation as quickly as possible, it will be crucial to understand workers’ compensation procedures.
After seeking medical attention and notifying your employer — while keeping records of this information — your employer’s insurer will hire a private investigator or will have their own claims investigator to conduct a probe. This investigation will take the majority of your claim time, and in most states, it will take two weeks to a month.
To determine the validity of your claim, an insurer will want to understand the nature of your injury and the circumstances surrounding it.
To establish the cause and severity of the injury, whether it will constitute short- or long-term disability, and the ultimate approval or denial of your claim, a thorough inquiry will likely include:
- A review of your previous and current medical records;
- An examination of previous claims;
- An independent medical evaluation;
- Coworker/witness interviews;
The insurer will be looking for any signs of fraud or inconsistency through these inspections, determine the significance of your injury, and any other evidence to conclude if you have a case or not.
During this time, your employer and insurer might ask you to agree to a settlement. It will be important for the employee not to settle until their injury is fully realized. Speak to a workers’ comp lawyer to determine whether or not the settlement matches the severity of your injury and subsequent time missed.
A claim approval may be quick and only take a few weeks to conclude that your claim is valid, or may extend for a month if inconsistencies are found.
If your claim is approved, the employee has the opportunity to agree to the payment offer for costs of medical bills, medication, disability compensation, and a portion of lost wages due to the injury. When an employee accepts the claim, they can receive payment either in a lump sum or a structured settlement.
What Happens If a Workers’ Comp Claim Is Denied?
If your case is denied after an investigation, it is not over for the employee yet. They will still have the option to appeal the decision. There are several reasons an insurer might reject your workers’ compensation claim, including:
- No medical evidence of injury from an approved doctor;
- The employee’s injury is associated with a pre-existing condition;
- Drugs or alcohol was involved;
- The employee was not following company safety policies;
- The injury was not reported promptly.
Seek legal assistance if your workers’ comp claim is denied. Many times, a lawyer can find misunderstandings, the investigation was not conducted properly, or other evidence that shows your claim should be accepted after an appeal.
How Often Do I Get Paid On Workers’ Comp?
For most states, a workers’ compensation check will come in at the same time as your regular paycheck would. This means that if you were paid bi-weekly, your workers’ comp check will be the same. You will not be paid the full amount of your regular paycheck, however.
Most states will offer you 66% of your usual pay, with additional benefits such as payment for doctor visits, medication, and more. The percentage of your wages an insurer will pay will be determined by the severity of your injury and if you are placed on short- or long-term disability.
How Long Is Too Long to Wait for Payment?
Knowing that your claim and investigation can take anywhere from two to four weeks, you should check with your lawyer, employer, and insurer if your claim is pending past this timeframe.
Your claim can get lost or buried under the other work an insurer has. It may also be the fact that your insurer has requested an extension on their investigation to inquire further. If the claim is not concluded by the end of the extension period, it will be automatically approved. For these matters, and to make sure you are receiving proper compensation quickly, contact a lawyer in your area to straighten out all the details.
If you are injured due to a workplace accident and are deemed unable to perform your regular duties, you should be compensated for your lost wages and medical treatments.
Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer
To make ends meet during this time, it will be vital that your workers’ compensation payment and benefits as quickly as possible. Additionally, if your company has a return-to-work policy, you may be able to perform lesser tasks to better acclimate you in returning to your original work tasks. Whatever the case, having a lawyer on your side during these times will be essential in avoiding being taken advantage of, and receiving your payment and benefits in time to eliminate a lapse in your financial security.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an attorney in your area!