Is there a time limit on workers compensation claims?


Is there a time limit on workers compensation claims?


Yes, there are time limits on workers compensation claim filing. Every state has different laws, and different deadlines for filing your claim or notifying your employer, so be careful to find out what the rules are in your state so that you don't forfeit benefits that you are entitled to because you did not report your injury or illness quickly enough.

In general, your employer must be told of your injury as soon as possible after the accident.  In most states, it is the employer's responsibility to file the initial claims paperwork with their insurance carrier and your state Workers Compensation Board. Here are some examples that highlight how different these notification time limits can be in different parts of the country:

  • In Texas you have to tell your employer about your injury within 30 days of when it happened or within 30 days of when you first realized your injury or illness was work related.
  • In Maryland, the statute of limitations for filing a worker's compensation claim is 2 years, but the system urges "timely" reporting of the incident to the employer.
  • In Nevada you have 90 days to file a workers comp claim but you must inform your employer of the injury or onset of occupational illness within 7 days by using a form called "Notice of Injury of Occupational Disease - Incident Report". A different form will be used to file the claim, but this initial form has to be filed within 7 days.

The easiest way to find out what the deadline is in your state is to check with your employer. Often, they are obligated by law to post information about workers compensation at your job site. If you are unsure of what to do you can contact the Workers Compensation Board in your state or an attorney in your area who specializes in workers compensation litigation. Although workers compensation laws were intended to eliminate lawsuits by employees, there are many times when a third party (not your employer) is responsible for your injury. Know your rights and protect them by contacting an attorney if you have any concerns.

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