What Are My Rights and Responsibilities if I am Injured in The Workplace?
When you are injured in the workplace, it is imperative that you know you're rights and responsibilities. As a Texas employee, being well informed will ensure you protect yourself both legally and physically. These tenets are equally important, and should be handled accordingly. The following is a brief overview of the Texas workers' compensation system.
- Hiring a workplace injury attorney should be your initial step, and is probably the most important right you have. These are the people that will be able to inform you about what you need to do and what you are entitled to, as a result of your injury.
- Regardless of fault, you have the right to receive medical and income benefits (with some exceptions). You may also be qualified to receive reimbursement for incurred travel expenses.
- It is possible you may have the right to receive income benefits due to your workplace-related injury.
- You are entitled to dispute any resolution involving the income and benefits you receive while injured. You can request an "Indemnity Dispute Resolution" if you disagree with your insurance reimbursement.
- To choose your own doctor. If you are involved in the Worker's Compensation Health Care Network, you can still select your own, but from a schedule they provide.
- You have the right of confidentiality. The Division of Worker's Compensation (DWC) is responsible for your file, and in some cases, your employer and their insurance carrier may have access to the contents.
- You must inform your employer within 30 days if you have been injured on the job, or had knowledge of it.
- You must know if you are in a Worker's Compensation Network and choose your doctor accordingly. Your employer should be able to provide you with this information if you do not have it.
- You must tell your doctor the exact nature of your injury, and that it was work related.
- It is your responsibility to send an Employee’s Claim for Compensation for a Work-Related Injury or Occupational Claim Form (DWC041) to the DWC. You have one year from the date of your injury to do so.
- You must provide a current address, phone number, and employer information to the DWC, and inform them of any change in status or wages that occur.
If you are unsure about any of the above rights or responsibilities involving your claim, it is always best to consult your workplace injury attorney