Interviewer: What if someone has a lot of hesitation to want to go forward with this at a certain point because they are afraid of how, not only how their employer may feel about them, but their future employees may feel about them?
Kevin Roach: Absolutely, yes, I see that all the time where people have hesitations about filing a workers compensation claim and what I try to do is educate them in the process. People tend to think that they have to sue their boss, but really that's not the case. Most of the time when you have a work injury the claim process has already started because you file your report of injury, your report of injury goes to the Missouri division of workers compensation, department of labor, and then that claim is sent on its way.
Most Employers Understand the Process and Know That Work Injuries are Bound to Happen
Once your injured a work a claim is filed with your employers insurance. When the claim is filed the damage to your employers insurance is already done. So whether you choose to exercise all of your rights under that claim, that's up to you but it does not affect your employers insurance, it does not count as an additional claim if you decide to receive your benefits, it doesn't really work that way. People don't understand it, but once it's explained to them, typically they decide they want to go forward because there's already a claim going anyway. Most employers understand that it's just a cost of business…people are going to get hurt on occasion…that’s why you have insurance.
Information Required By An Attorney to File a Missouri Workers Compensation Claim
Interviewer: When I'm going to meet with an attorney, what sort of paperwork should I be bringing? Information that I should have on hand all the time with me?
Kevin Roach: Well, whenever I call someone in, whenever I schedule an initial consultation with someone for workers compensation, what I like for them to bring would be, first of all if they have their report of injury, that's always good to have. If there has been a claim filed, we'd like to get any correspondence they have received from the claims adjuster and / or the Missouri division of workers compensation.
The more information you have regarding your work injury the better
Any medical records, X-rays, MRI reports that they have related to their treatment, names of any witnesses that may have witnessed their injury, any pictures they may have related to, documenting their injuries, condition of the workplace that may have resulted in the accidents, names of any doctors, health care providers, just basically any information they have related to their claim as to date, they bring it with them. If they don't have that information, then we can generally get it all together, but it just helps speed the process along if they have documentation, that's always a good thing.