Workplace injuries are very common place. Indeed, the majority of our time is spent working, earning a wage and providing for our families. Depending on the type of work, work-related injuries may be even more common. The most important requirement for obtaining benefits for your injuries is filing your Workers Compensation claim. Failing to file a Workers Compensation Claim within the time limit, will most likely prevent you from receiving any benefits for your injury. Not a filing a claim at all, would certainly result in no recovery.
What is the “statute of limitations?”
Worker’s Compensation laws, like most laws regarding claims for compensation or other recovery, require employees to file a claim for Workers Comp benefits within a set amount of time. Each state has its own laws and its own “statute of limitations” period. A statute of limitations is simply a deadline for filing a claim, and in most cases, it depends on the type of injury.
In most instances, there is also a deadline for notifying your employer of your workplace injury, even before the claim is actually filed. Typically, this deadline is 30-45 days following the injury. If you fail to give timely notice, you may also lose your right to file a Workers Comp claim.
Although the notice to your employer can be informal, it is always wisest to give notice in writing, including the date and place of the injury. However, the best thing to do is find out what the specific requirements are in your state.
Missouri’s Workers Comp Notice Requirements
In Missouri, employees are required to give written notice of your injury within thirty (30) days of the date of the accident. The notice should include your name and address, the date, time, place, and type of injury. The notice should be submitted to someone management, not simply a co-worker. After your employer receives notice of the injury, they are required to file a Report of Injury with the Division of Workers’ Compensation, if your injury results in either lost time from work or at least $500.00 in medical treatment.
Missouri’s Workers Comp Statute of Limitations
Claims against your employer must be filed two (2) years from either, the date of the accident, or the date of the last payment of benefits made based on the accident (such as disability benefits). Whichever date is later. If the employer failed to file the Report of Injury, as required, then the employee’s time for filing the claim is extended to three (3) years.
Worker’s Comp Notice Requirements in Arkansas
In Arkansas, employees are advised to report their injuries to their employer “immediately. The employer is not responsible for any benefits prior to receipt of the employee’s notice of injury. An exception is made if the injury rendered the employee physically or mentally incapable of giving notice, or the injury is otherwise made known to the employer immediately after it occurs.
Workers Comp Statute of Limitations in Arkansas
Like Missouri, the statute of limitations for submitting a Workers Comp claim in Arkansas is two years from the date that you are injured. If you are seeking benefits for a workplace illness, the deadline is two years from the time you become aware or should have been aware that you have an employment-related illness.
If you have questions regarding filing claims, or any other Workers Compensation issues, call the Cottrell Law Office at (888) 433-4861.
He is licensed to practice law in the United States District Court for the District of Kansas, eastern Arkansas, western Arkansas, and western Missouri. He was Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Crawford County, Kansas from 1987-1989.
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