How Long Does a Workers' Compensation Claim Take?
If you or a loved one has been injured on the job, you are likely already feeling the pressure of everyday expenses and dreading the thought of missing paychecks. Add to that the fear that you may be suffering from a permanent disability that leaves you unable to work again. Don’t let this situation overwhelm you. Get help filing your claim for workers’ compensation benefits now.
Our experienced Raleigh workers’ compensation lawyers can help you get your initial claim together and answer any questions you may have about the process. We also have a successful track record of securing full and fair workers’ compensation settlements when our injured clients are unable to return to the work they did before. And we handle appeals if your claim was denied or if your benefits are lower than what they should be.
Schedule a free consultation with our legal team today to discuss your claim, and learn how we can help you and your family during this stressful time.
NC Workers’ Compensation Statute of Limitations Timeline
Generally, it will take 4-8 weeks from the time the agreement is reached until there is money in your hands. Once the settlement is reached, the employers’ attorney will need to draft the settlement contracts.
Although every case we handle is different, our attorneys work efficiently to get your workers’ compensation payments started as soon as possible. In cases involving an injury or illness that will likely end up being a permanent disability, how long it takes to reach a workers’ compensation settlement will depend on how long it takes you to reach maximum medical improvement. In short, we need to know how your disability is ultimately going to affect you in order to negotiate for a full and fair settlement.
In general, here is how a NC workers’ compensation claim will go, for more information on what you can expect from the workers’ compensation process, click here:
Immediately Following a Work Injury
- You should report your injury to your employer. Depending on the severity of your injury, you may need to quickly tell your boss or have a fellow employee tell them. Even if your injury does not seem serious, you should still report it immediately rather than waiting to see if it gets better.
- You should seek medical treatment. Your employer will direct you to a health care provider to seek treatment for your injuries. If your employer cannot identify a health care provider for you, seek appropriate care as soon as possible, either through your regular doctor or at a hospital. Be sure to tell the doctor you were hurt at work.
Within 5 Days
- Your employer must file a form with the workers’ compensation insurance provider. This is called Form 19, and your employer should provide you a copy of the form along with a form for you to fill out. Please note: Your claim for benefits does not start with your employer’s filing of Form 19.
- You should also receive a form to fill out from your employer. This is called Form 18, and it must be filled out and sent to the North Carolina Industrial Commission in order to file for workers’ compensation benefits. An attorney can help you fill out the form to ensure it is done properly.
After 7 Days
- The clock begins ticking for you to receive workers’ compensation benefits for lost wages. These benefits will cover a portion of your lost wages, and the amount will depend on whether you are able to come back to work partially or not at all. You are not immediately paid for the first 7 days of work missed.
After 21 Days
- You can receive payment for the first 7 days of work you missed once you have been out of work for 21 days.
Throughout the NC Workers’ Compensation Process
- You need to carefully follow your doctor’s instructions for treating your injury. Be sure to attend all follow-up appointments, take medication as prescribed, and avoid restricted activities.
Within Two Years
- This is the time limit for filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. You do not have to wait 2 years to file your claim. But you cannot wait longer than 2 years or you lose your right to benefits.
Once You Have Reached Maximum Medical Improvement
- Our attorneys will be able to determine what a full and fair workers’ compensation settlement should be in your case, and we will negotiate to resolve your claim. Every case we handle is different, and the amount of time it takes to reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) will depend on your injury. Your doctor will determine when you have reached MMI, indicating that you have done everything you can to recover as much as possible.
Don’t Waste Time After a Work Injury
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured on the job, you need to speak with our knowledgeable N.C. workers’ compensation attorneys today. We do not charge anything to review your case, and you are under no obligation to hire us after an initial consultation. You also do not have to pay us anything to get started working on your claim. Instead, we only collect payment if and when we recover compensation for you.
Get started on your workers’ compensation claim today by calling or filling out our online form.
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