Common Questions About Workers’ Compensation
Get Answers from an Oklahoma City Personal Injury Lawyer
Do you have questions about your rights after a workplace accident? The Oklahoma City personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Dan Davis have answers. Our legal team has been fighting for the rights of injured employees for over two and a half decades, so please do not wait a second longer to give call us if you were hurt on the job. We can review your case for free in an initial consultation. We are also available 24/7!
How to get Workers' Compensation:
You may be eligible for workers' compensation if you were injured or became ill as a result of work. There are three basic requirements that make you eligible for receicing benefits: (1) You must be an employee, (2) Your employer carries workers' compensation insurance, (3) You experience a work-related illness or injury.
How long do I have to file a workers’ compensation claim in Oklahoma?
As of 2014, the time to file your claim has been reduced from two years to one year.
Are employers required to offer workers’ compensation insurance in Oklahoma?
No. An employer can “opt out” of workers’ compensation and, if it does so, the employer – and not an impartial judge – determines who is eligible for benefits. What this means is that injured workers whose employers choose to opt out of the administrative system face a lower level of due process protection while filing a claim.
Can I use my own doctor if I’ve been injured and need to file a workers’ comp claim?
No. Under Oklahoma law, employees have no choice of physician. Those who have been injured on the job must see a physician that has been chosen by the insurance carrier.
Can I collect workers’ compensation if my employer makes me return to the same job?
No. Awards of compensation are eliminated for workers who return to the same job. So, if your injury renders you a paraplegic, but your employer sticks you back in the same job to avoid paying workers’ comp, you get no compensation for your condition. By the way, they would probably have to pay for the wheelchair!
Can I collect workers’ comp if I’ve been terminated from my job while injured?
Yes, but less than you could have received prior to the reforms. If you are fortunate enough to obtain compensation for your injury (that is, the employer fires you after the injury), the amount you may be able to get has been reduced by 30 percent in some cases and, in most cases, by 70 percent to 80 percent.
How much can I collect if I can’t work due to my injury?
If you can’t work due to your injury, you may be able to collect Temporary Total Disability, but this funding has been slashed from $735 per week to $515.
Can workers' compensation be denied?
Yes. A workers' compensation claim may be denied for a number of reasons. Some common reasons for a denial of benefits may include:
- Employer disputes the claim
- Injury or claim not reported in time
- No medical treatment needed
- No evidence that injury was work-related
What can I do if my claim has been denied?
If your employer denies your claim, you can appeal to a three-person committee composed of people chosen not by an independent party, but by the employer! Additionally, your employer can choose that your claim be submitted to binding arbitration. And who gets to pick the arbitrator? The employer does.
What happens when my case gets heard by the new judges?
All new judges under the newly implemented workers’ compensation laws are appointed by a commission composed of people who do not even have to be lawyers. The new judges do not even have to consider rules of evidence, so they could accept an un-notarized affidavit from an employer that the injury did not occur and consider it as evidence.
What happens if I lose my case?
If you lose your case, your case is appealed to the commission, people handpicked by the Governor, whose objective is to completely eliminate workers’ compensation benefits for injured workers.
Have more questions? Contact the Law Offices of Dan Davis for a free review: (405) 531-9983.