What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ Compensation in Oxnard is a program that requires your employer to provide medical and other benefits if you are injured where the injury or illness is caused by the work you performed for your employer.
What do I need to do if I am injured?
1. Get first aid or medical care immediately if needed. You may choose the physician.
2. Tell your supervisor, your employer or “the office” about the injury right away. You must give written notice to your employer and the Board within 30 days after the accident or when you think you have an illness caused by work. The Division provides the “Report of Occupational Injury or Illness” for this purpose. Obtain the form from your employer or the Division. Complete your part of the form and give your employer all the copies. After your employer completes its portion, your employer should give you the yellow copy. If your employer will not give you a form, contact the Division.
3. Write down your employer’s official name and address and the insurer’s name and address. Your employer must post a notice of insurance or self-insurance in three places where employees can easily see it. The employer’s name and address and the insurer’s name and address can be found on the posted notice of insurance. If your employer did not post a notice or if your employer will not give you the insurer’s name when you ask, contact the Division.
4. Write down your supervisor’s, foreman’s, or boss’s name. Also write down the names of the people who saw your accident or the work conditions that may have caused your illness.
5. Get treatment from one licensed doctor. Give the doctor your employer’s official name and address and the insurer’s name and address. Ask your doctor to forward a report to the insurer and the Board within 14 days of treatment. Give the insurer your doctor’s name and address right away.
6. You may change your treating doctor once. However, before you change doctors, tell the insurer that you are making a change. If you change doctors more than once without the insurer’s written consent, you may have to pay the doctor’s bills. If your treating doctor refers you to a specialist, this is not a change of doctors.
7. Keep receipts for medicine, actual travel expenses (including mileage) and other costs of your medical care. Give copies of the receipts and the mileage record to the insurer for reimbursement. If you do not keep receipts, you may not be eligible for reimbursement.
8. If your injury keeps you from working for more than three calendar days, forward copies of your W-2 forms, wage stubs, or other written records proving your earnings to the insurer. Do not send them to the Board or the Division as this will slow your payment. The insurer uses this information to calculate your weekly disability compensation rate. Employer provided room and board, contributions to pension plans and other employer provided benefits may be used in figuring your disability benefit rate. Provide the insurer with proof of employer contributions as soon as possible.
9. Take good care of yourself. Get needed treatment, follow your doctor’s advice, and act reasonably. Make every reasonable effort to get well and go back to work.
10. Immediately tell the insurer when you go back to work, get unemployment benefits, file for social security benefits, or change your address.
11. Contact the Division if you are not paid what you think you are owed.
12. Tell the truth. If you lie or submit false documents to obtain benefits, you are guilty of a crime which is punishable by a maximum fine of $50,000, imprisonment of up to 10 years, or both. You are also civilly liable to the person adversely affected.
13. Keep records of all phone calls and letters between you and the insurer.
What is the insurer supposed to do if you are injured?
The insurer usually learns of your injury from the Report of Injury which it receives from your employer. Within 21 days after the employer learns of your injury, the insurer must either begin to pay benefits or controvert (deny) them. If the insurer denies benefits, it must send you and the Board a Controversion Notice. The notice will explain how to file a written claim with the Board should you dispute the controversion.
How long do I have to report my injury?
Within 30 days after the injury, you must give the employer and the Board written notice of the injury. If you do not give this notice, your benefits will be barred unless the Board excuses your failure to give notice. If 30 days have passed and you have not given your employer written notice, contact the employer and the Division immediately. The notice of injury forms “Report of Occupational Injury of Illness is available from your employer or from the Division offices. You must complete this report and provide it to your employer within 30 days following your injury. You must complete the employee’s portion of the form (the top half) and give the form to your employer to complete and distribute.
What’s causing my pain?
It’s not uncommon to not realize you are hurt initially. It may be a few days or more before the pain starts to set in. Ligaments, joints and tendons start to swell and muscles spasm until you realize you are injured. If you are injured on the job, you have to report the injury to your employer within 30 days.
Injured muscles and joints often feel stiff and tender to pressure and may have a loss of normal motion. They can cause muscle weakness, muscle spasm, headaches or pain. Pain simply tells you that something is wrong. Taking drugs for pain and muscle spasms may provide temporary relief until you can get treated. The removal of the underlying reasons you are having pain is the goal of proper treatment.
What can I expect on my first visit to Chiropractic Wellness Center?
We are a physical rehabilitation clinic. We do not prescribe narcotics or issue prescription drugs. Here at Chiropractic Wellness Center, we’ll discuss your case, take x-rays if needed, perform an examination, show you what’s wrong and what we can do for you. If you already have the yellow copy of the form on which you reported your injury to your employer, bring that with you. We will handle the paperwork for you from there. You can usually start physical treatment that same day.
What should I do first?
First, decide if you want to seek care in our office. Make sure you have reported your injury within the 30 day window. You may choose our doctor as your attending physician. If you have already seen a doctor, you may change doctors but will need to let your adjuster know you will be changing attending doctors to Chiropractic Wellness Center.
What should I do now?
Now all you need to do is call us, we are here to help you. Tell us you were injured at work and that you want to schedule a consultation. We will take it from there.