The first step in the workers’ compensation process is notifying your employer of your injury. This is easier said than done. You must include specific and detailed information, all while being professional and courteous. Since the claim letter is the first step, it can set the tone for the entire process. Contacting an experienced workers’ comp attorney can help you make sure everything goes smoothly. Still, it can be helpful to see exactly what needs to be included in a notification letter.
Steps to Notifying Your Employer of a Workplace Injury
1. State your name, date of birth, social security number, and date of injury at the very beginning of your letter.
Re: EMPLOYEE: JOHN M. DOE
DATE OF BIRTH: 1/29/1964
SOCIAL SECURITY NO.: 028-47-XXXX
DATE OF INJURY: 4/21/2015
2. Explicitly state that you were on-the-job and that you were injured while performing your duties. Elaborate on the tasks you were performing at the time of your injury. Include as many details as you can.
Example: “I have been employed at [insert company name] since [insert employment start date]. On [insert date of injury], I was [insert what you were doing at the time of injury].”
You can include an additional paragraph elaborating further on the task you were performing if needed.
3. Talk about the injury. After explaining the task you were performing, discuss the injury itself. Be detailed and specific.
4. State that you had no previous injuries. Claims are often denied because there is even the smallest suspicion of a pre-existing injury. You’ll want to nip this in the bud as soon as possible by including a statement in your letter that looks like this:
“Prior to this injury, I have never had any issues with [insert injured body part].”
5. Include information from your doctor if possible. If your injury was treated or if a doctor examined you, it’s helpful to include some information about this in your letter. However, never include details about an injury you think you've suffered. You can say something like:
“While at the hospital, I underwent [insert any testing you may have had]. I learned that I have [insert injury].”
6. Request a list of approved doctors. Under Massachusetts worker’ comp law, your employer may request that you visit a certain doctor for your first official medical visit. Be sure to enquire about which doctors you should be visiting.
7. Politely remind your employer to take the next steps. A short sentence to remind your employer to notify their insurance company and the Department of Industrial Accidents is a good way to end the letter.
Other Important Workers’ Comp Claim Letter Tips
- Do not use accusatory, threatening, or whiney language in your letter
- Be specific and thorough
- Consult with a workers’ comp attorney if you have any concerns
Contact a Massachusetts Workers’ Comp Attorney
Writing a workers’ comp claim letter to your employer sounds simple, but any misstep can affect your benefits. To ensure that you get the maximum possible benefits for your work injury, it can be helpful to speak with a trusted workers’ comp attorney. We can help you with everything from writing the claim letter to contacting the insurance company, and everything in between. If you need legal help, take the first steps by filling out our free case evaluation or calling us at (617) 379-0016.