Workers' Compensation: Employer Obligations

Workers' Compensation: Employer Obligations

In this video, St. Louis workers’ compensation attorney Mark Cantor explains what an employer is required to do by law for an injured worker.

Video Transcript —

Thanks for visiting my law firm Cantor and Associate. I amMark Cantor. We handlepersonal injury cases throughout the Midwest: auto accidents and things of that nature. Today I want to talk to you about workers' compensation claim. Specifically I want to talk to you about your employer's obligations - what they owe you after you have been injured at work.

We all know that they owe you two-thirds of your wages while you are off work, they owe all of your medical bills (that is 100% of your medical bills) that they authorize, and they owe you a lump sum payment for either permanent partial or permanent total disability.

When we go to trial, very frequently an employer says, "well we didn't know about the accident." Well you know what, they probably did. You do have, under the law, an obligation to tell them, but they have an obligation to do what is called a "Report of Injury." What that means is that they have to fill out a claim form that says your name, your address, how you were hurt and how much you earn. They have to file that. If you report it to your employer, they have an obligation to do a Report of Injury.

Now let's say you come to me and they haven't done a report of injury and you tell me, "Mark, I told them." My job is to advocate for you. I find that this happens very frequently. A person gets injured and says, "Hey, I told my supervisor Joe." And Joe may or may not have reported it, but Joe has an obligation. He works for the employer. He is your boss. He is your supervisor. They have to report it. So now you come to me and I file a formal claim and they say, "Well we didn't get it." Well the truth sets you free. That is why you have to try these cases because then we have to go and depose Joe. And Joe is going to say, "Oh yeah, he told me and I just figured he would get better." Or whatever he is going to say. But, when you get to the root of it, the employer has an obligation to file that Report of Injury.

When I file the claim for you, the employer has an obligation - meaning that they must - file an "Answer" or your claim is deemed admitted. And they don't have forever to do it. The Division of Workers' Compensation gets the claim that I file for you and 15 days later they send out an acknowledgement to your employer. Then your employer has to file and Answer within 30 days. Frequently they don't. If they do not, then the claim is deemed admitted as a matter of law. I set the case law on that in the Missouri Court of Appeals. The case is T.H. vs. Sonic Drive-In. If you are injured in the course and scope of your employment and you file a claim, then the employer has 30 days to file an answer or the facts of the claim are deemed admitted - and that goes to your salary too. If we put "max rate" and they don't respond, then you get the max rate.

They have an obligation to pay all your medical, an obligation to file a Report of Injury, an obligation to file an Answer, and if they don't do all of those things then you have to push for trial. You need a law firm that does that. I tried six cases this summer alone. It is October 6, 2014 and I know a lot of lawyers that do this that don't try a case all year. It is just different practices. I push to get full value. I am not demeaning them, but you have to look at your law firm and ask, "Is this the person for me?," "Are they doing the things I want done?," and "Are they willing to try the case?"

I am Mark Cantor. My law firm is Cantor and Associate. If you have a Missouri workers' compensation claim or an Illinois Claim, I am licensed in both states, please come visit me or call me at (314) 542-9999 or toll-free at (866) 485-3425. Thank you for watching my employer obligations video.

POSTED IN: Mark's Post St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys Workers' Compensation
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