Despite how successful your risk management program is, your employees can still be injured. Whether they slip down a flight of stairs and sprain their wrist or are rear-ended on the way to an inspection, it is important to have a Workers’ Compensation insurance policy in place to protect your employees and company.

Workers’ Compensation insurance provides coverage for on-the-job injuries, including medical expenses and lost wages. This coverage applies regardless of fault, though coverage varies by state. Some states require this coverage, while others highly encourage it.

Because workers’ compensation claims are different from case to case, there is often confusion surrounding how to handle a claim.

When to Report an Injury

Report lag, or the number of calendar days between when an injury occurs and when it is reported to the insurance carrier, is a major issue in workers’ compensation. Keep track of your report lag, and make adjustments, if possible.

Generally, the shorter the length of report lag, the better. Timely claim reporting is an indicator of a good claims management program. It means:

  • Communication is open between parties
  • Injured workers receive proper medical care
  • Adjustors are able to fully investigate claims in a timely manner
  • Compensability decisions are able to be made
  • Empowers the return-to-work process
  • Protects income streams initiated for injured workers

In fact, when claims are not reported within the state’s statutory window, report lag can be a cause for litigation.

How to Avoid Claims

While workers’ compensation claims are inevitable, there are steps you can take to make your business safer for your employees. Implement these measures to prevent workers’ compensation claims:

  • When hiring, draft clear job advertisements to help manage expectations
  • Ask safety-based questions in interviews
  • Require employees to go through orientation and training
  • Schedule regular breaks
  • Encourage questions and enforce a safety culture
  • Establish a lifting policy (wide stance, bend at the knees, rise using legs, not the back)

A smart risk management program paired with a Workers’ Compensation policy from Lockton Affinity can help reduce workers’ compensation claims and associated fees.


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