How Long Do You Have to Report a Work Injury to Your Employer?

Published on Apr 16, 2024 at 7:12 pm in Workers Compensation.

When you’re at work, you expect certain precautions and regulations to be followed to keep you and your coworkers safe. Unfortunately, even with the best safety equipment and standards, accidents still occur, and workers are injured.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employers reported 42,600 on-the-job injuries and illnesses in private industry in Maryland in 2022. Of those reported cases, 36,300 were injuries, while 6,400 were illnesses. And these are the numbers for the private sector alone.

So, what do you do when you suffer an injury while on the job? How long do you have to report a work injury to your employer?

We’ll answer that question and provide some insight into Maryland workers’ compensation deadlines and what to do after suffering an injury while working.

What to Do After a Workplace Injury

Every business in Maryland that has one or more employees is required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation covers injuries and occupational illnesses that may occur due to accidents or exposures while an employee is on the job.

However, not all injuries are covered, even if the accident occurs at work, and there are a handful of exceptions.

Those exceptions are agriculture businesses with fewer than three employees and an annual payroll of less than $15,000, as well as sole proprietors and business partnerships partners. If you sustain an injury while at work, or if you become ill and you believe your illness is work-related, you should:

  • Report the injury to your employer
  • Seek medical attention
  • Document everything (expenses, missed work, etc.)
  • Contact a qualified workers’ compensation attorney from Belsky & Horowitz, LLC

Deadlines for Notifying Your Employer

So, you’ve been injured at work or discovered you have a serious illness due to exposure to your job. You know you should report it to your employer, but how long do you have to do so? We’ll explain.

  • Accidental injury: You have 10 days to report an accidental injury to your employer. However, it is recommended that you notify your employer as soon as possible after the date your injury occurs. While a verbal notification is accepted, it’s generally best to notify your employer of your injury in writing and include photos if possible. If your injury occurred in front of your supervisor, that is considered acceptable notice, and you do not have to give additional verbal or written notice to your employer.
  • Occupational illness: You have 1 year from the date of your diagnosis or from when you found out to report an occupational illness or disease.
  • Work-related death: The family of a deceased employee has 30 days to report the death to the employer in order to initiate a claim for death benefits.

Deadlines for Filing Workers’ Compensation Claims

The Maryland Workers’ Compensation Commission (MWCC) sets different time limits for reporting and filing a workers’ compensation claim, depending on the type of claim you file.

  • Accidental Injury and Occupational Disease: All workers’ compensation claims should be filed with the MWCC within 60 days of the injury or discovery of an occupational illness. Any employee who fails to file an accidental injury claim within 2 years of the injury will be barred from receiving compensation for that injury forever.
  • Death Benefits: In order to receive benefits, surviving family members of the deceased employee must notify the MWCC of their loved one’s accidental injury death within 18 months. In the case of an occupational disease, the surviving family must notify the MWCC within 2 years of their loved one’s death.

Other Important Deadlines

The MWCC has 30 days after receiving your claim to either issue an award or place your claim up for a hearing if the insurer is contesting the claim you’ve made.

After your claim has been filed, the insurance carrier has 21 days to either provide benefits or dispute it.

Reasons Your Workers’ Compensation Claim Might Be Denied

When you are injured on the job, you must report the accident to your employer. Your employer will then begin a claim with their insurance company, and the MWCC will issue a notice of that claim. If the insurance company approves your claim, benefits will be paid out to you to cover your medical expenses and a portion of your lost wages.

However, an employer or their insurance company may deny your claim, which will make the process more complicated. Workers’ compensation claims are generally denied for one of the following two reasons:

Insufficient Proof

Your employer may argue that your injury or illness is not work-related if you were not performing work duties at the time your injury occurred or that you deliberately caused the incident that led to your injury.

They may also claim that your injury or illness is due to a pre-existing medical condition.

This is why you and your attorney need to gather as much documentation as possible to prove your injury did indeed occur while you were at work.

Missed Deadlines

As we’ve discussed, there are several deadlines for reporting and filing your claim after you have been injured or suffered an illness on the job. It’s vital to your case that you pay attention to all relevant deadlines because if you fail to meet a deadline, you could be prevented from receiving the benefits you deserve.

It’s best to report any injury or illness to your employer as soon as it occurs. However, these claims can become quite complex, with deadlines and necessary documentation.

So, if you suffered an injury while on the job or need help filing a claim, a qualified Baltimore workers’ compensation lawyer from Belsky & Horowitz, LLC is here to help.

Work injuries happen every day, even to those of us who follow all safety procedures, and if you suffer from an accident or exposure in your job, don’t hesitate to seek out workers’ compensation that may be available to you.



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