How to File a Workers' Compensation Claim in Massachusetts
How to file a workers' compensation claimIf you are injured in a workplace accident, Massachusetts law requires you to give notice of the accident in a reasonable period of time to a person in a supervisory capacity. If your place of employment has a relationship with a preferred provider, you must go to that physician or clinic if instructed by your employer for your FIRST visit. After that, you are free to go to your own physician. The employer has 7 days to inform the insurer about the incident, assuming time is lost, and then the insurer is required to pay or deny the claim within 14 days. If a denial is processed or 30 days has gone by, you have the right to file a claim with the Department of Industrial Accidents. Ultimately, if no resolution is reached, a judge hears the matter and an order is issued. Although early on the process is less formal, if a Hearing is later required, rules of evidence are followed.
Benefit structureMassachusetts allows for 3 years of total disability, 5 years of partial disability with no more than 7 years of benefits combined. If one qualifies for permanent and total disability, then the benefit structure will last a person's lifetime. If both sides agree, a settlement of the benefits can be reached for one lump sum amount and terminate the collection of benefits. Otherwise, either the insurer can terminate benefits unilaterally, generally within 6 months of receipt ,or a judge can terminate these benefits.