How Long Do I Have to File a Claim?
If you were injured on the job and intend to make a workers' compensation claim, there are certain time limitations you must know about. The first concerns the duty to provide your employer with "notice of injury." An injured employee or his/her representative (commonly referred to as the "claimant") must give the employer (or the employer's representative, agent or even the injured employee's own supervisor) notice of the injury "immediately on the occurrence of any accident or as soon thereafter as practicable," but in no event later than "thirty days after the occurrence of an accident or within thirty days after death resulting from an accident." OCGA § 34-9-80. Failure to provide timely, proper and sufficient notice of injury to your employer can result in the denial of your claim.
Once notice is provided, your actual workers' compensation claim must be filed within the appropriate statute of limitations. This varies depending on the circumstances of your particular case. Where all issues of workers' compensation are involved, the length of time you have depends on whether the employer has already provided you with medical or income benefits. If not, then you probably only have one (1) year from the date of injury in which to file your claim. A claim is filed by delivering a properly completed "Notice of Claim/Request for Hearing" form to The State Board of Workers' Compensation. The various statutes of limitation for filing are as follows:
- One year from date of injury;
- One year from date of last employer provided remedial treatment; and
- Two years from last payment of weekly income benefits.
See generally O.C.G.A. § 34-9-82. To determine which applies to your specific claim, contact one of the experienced workers' compensation lawyers at Burnside Law Firm LLP.
If you fail to file your claim within the appropriate statute of limitations you will not be entitled to recover, and the State Board of Workers' Compensation will have no jurisdiction to entertain your claim. In other words, your claim will probably be dismissed.
Since the notice and claims limitation periods vary from case to case depending upon the circumstances, you should seek legal advice promptly to make sure your rights are protected. If you have been injured on the job and wish to speak with an experienced attorney about your right to workers' compensation benefits, contact the law office of Burnside Law Firm for a free initial consultation.
DISCLAIMER: The general information outlined above is not intended as legal advice in your particular case. Every case is different and depends upon its own individual facts and circumstances. Therefore, you cannot rely upon this information as legal advice and should contact an attorney at Burnside Law Firm LLP for specific advice about your particular case.
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