Filing a workers' compensation claim can be a complicated business. It is often a lengthy process that requires employees to report their injury several times and follow specific procedures, all while recovering from an injury.
The process can be overwhelming. And if an employee makes inconsistent statements or does not include necessary details, they could jeopardize their claim. They also face the risk of their employer accusing them of fraud.
Workers' compensation fraud is a serious accusation
Being accused of workers' compensation fraud can be frightening. It could leave employees without the benefits they need. It could also leave them facing criminal charges.
That is the last thing that many injured workers want to worry about. However, there are a few ways that employees can reduce or even eliminate the risk of a fraud accusation.
Tips to prevent a fraud claim
Here are some helpful tips for employees to help them through the workers' compensation process and eliminate the risk of fraud:
- Follow all state guidelines: Employees must follow the specific procedure to obtain workers' compensation carefully. First, it is critical for employees to report their injury to their employer as soon as possible. Then, they should follow their employer's instructions. The Maryland Workers' Compensation Commission also provides helpful information about this process.
- Keep detailed records: Requesting copies of medical records, taking photographs of injuries and even writing down a record of the incident can be valuable evidence for a workers' compensation claim. Accurate and honest records can also disprove fraud.
- Do not work: It is difficult for an employee and their family to make ends meet while they wait for workers' compensation benefits. However, continuing to work or even working at another job could make employers--and their insurance companies--suspect fraud.
- Be honest: This might seem obvious, but honesty is a critical element of all workers' compensation claims. It is essential that employees do not exaggerate the effects of their injury or the details of the incident that caused the injury.
Prioritizing honesty and following these tips can help injured employees across Maryland recover the benefits they need and prevent even the chance of a fraud accusation.