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When should I tell my employer I was hurt at work?

In Illinois, it is important that an injured worker report a work accident to the employer as soon as possible after the accident. Timely notice is crucial to avoid a disputed workers’ compensation claim.

The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act requires the injured employee give notice to the employer of a work related injury within 45 days of the accident. While notice may be given orally, it may be best to document the date, time and place of the accident. While many workers try to work through an injury, delay in giving notice may call into question the validity of your claim. For example, if a work injury occurs on a Thursday but the employee does not provide notice until that Monday, the employer may believe an injury occurred over the weekend and not at work. Therefore, notifying your employer immediately is one of the most critical steps you can take to protect yourself.

Although notice may be given orally, your employer may have a written policy to file a report of injury that occurred in your workplace. If that is the case, you should follow the company procedure and properly file a written report in order to avoid getting into trouble with your employer. While Illinois law only requires oral notice, documentation of your injuries is an important aspect of preserving your claim.

While many work accidents occur as the result of a single event, there are repetitive trauma accidents where no specific event caused an injury. In this case, it is difficult to evaluate when a worker should have given notice of an accident. You should report this type of accident to your employer when you first realize you are having a physical problem due to the work you have been doing. If you have any questions regarding giving notice of a work-related accident, please give us a call for a free consultation.

The attorneys at Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid are committed to representing people who have been seriously injured and incur significant medical expenses as a result of work injuries. Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid continue to handle workers’ compensation and personal injury cases in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Will and Kendall Counties and all throughout the Chicagoland area.


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