Since South Dakota follows a “no-fault” workers’ compensation policy, many applicants assume that the process comes without any hassles. While the steps appear straightforward, there is a formal process that applicants and employers must follow. If an employer makes one or more mistakes on the application, workers’ comp requests might be denied.
Mistakes with workers’ compensation claims
Employers could commit oversights and errors that negatively impact an injured worker. Some “small” mistakes could send a simple claim into chaos. For example, failing to ask the employee to sign a medical records release could undermine the process. A failure to keep notes about the accident might further cause trouble since questions may arise regarding whether there was even an incident.
Losing contact with an employee might occur when a company suffers from disorganization, understaffing and other issues. Not remaining in touch with an employee filing a claim may also contribute to confusion. An employer could even suffer legal trouble when not returning calls or responding to workers since the injured worker may turn to an attorney to move things forward.
The employer creates avoidable problems
An employer might not move along with a workers’ compensation claim efficiently. Perhaps an employer feels that the process is not a priority based on current responsibilities and workloads. Such an attitude could lead to legal actions since the employer does have responsibilities when workers get hurt.
In addition, it’s important to ask why a worker got hurt in the first place. Employers that do not provide a safe work environment, fail to provide the necessary equipment or cut back on safety training might contribute to worker injuries. Employers must remember that certain circumstances allow an employee to seek workers’ comp benefits or file a lawsuit.
A workers’ comp attorney may assist a worker with filing a claim and dealing with the employer. The attorney might help with denials and other issues to ensure that their client has a chance to collect benefits.