Michigan lawyer discusses options if the employer refuses to file workers’ comp claim.
Michigan adopted its first workman’s comp law in 1912. It protects employees hurt on-the-job and is considered a safety net. It was designed as a compromise between labor and business. Employees hurt on-the-job are guaranteed medical treatment and lost wages regardless of their fault. In exchange, companies are protected from civil lawsuits for their negligence. But what happens when an employer refuses to file workers’ comp claim? Keep reading to find out about legal rights.
All private companies who have at least 1 employee working 35 hours or more per week are generally required to purchase workman’s comp insurance. Companies who fail to purchase this insurance are still responsible for payment. Officers and directors of the company can be held personally liable for payment. They can also face stiff civil and criminal penalties.
Employees must give notice of a workplace injury within 90 days from the time it occurs. Notice can be oral so just telling a manager is enough. However, it is a good idea to fill out a written accident report. This can be used as proof in the event of a dispute. Never wait until the following day to report a workplace accident because this is a red flag for companies.
Claim must be made within 2 years of the accident. It requires nothing more than asking for medical treatment or lost wages. We recommend making a claim in writing so proof exists should a dispute occur. This can be done by sending an email, text message, or letter.
Unfortunately, some companies refuse to file claims to their insurance. Our experience shows that when a bad employer refuses to file a workers comp claim it’s because they worry about higher insurance premiums or have misrepresented the nature of their businesses and don’t want to get caught. Employers who mispresent their business commit premium fraud and could get into trouble.
Watch out for an employer who refuses to file a workers’ comp claim but insists on paying cash for medical bills and lost wages. These promises are rarely kept and could jeopardize payment of future benefits. Other items like mileage, attendant care, and vocational rehabilitation are never paid when this happens.
Never lie to a physician or hospital about how the work accident occurred. A magistrate will review medical records and use this evidence to deny payment based upon credibility. It is a trick used by companies to avoid payment. Don’t fall into this trap!
What to do if an employer refuses to file a workers’ comp claim in Michigan?
If an employer refuses to file a workers’ comp claim you can file your own with the Workers’ Compensation Agency (WCA) when the boss refuses. Notice will be automatically sent to the company and its insurance company by the State of Michigan. This can be done using the Employee’s Report of Claim (Form WC-177). This will ensure legal rights are protected. Hire a lawyer if payment of benefits is disputed.
An employee cannot be fired or demoted for making a claim. This could lead to a second lawsuit for wrongful termination. Make sure to speak with an experienced lawyer if this occurs.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (844) 316-8033 for a free consultation today.