If you have been injured at work, then your chances of getting workers' compensation benefits depends on the strength of your evidence; in this case mostly documentary evidence. The more documents (related to your injury and work) you can gather, the easier it will be to handle your claim process. Here are four categories of documents that should never miss in your claim process file:
Your Medical Reports
Your medical reports are important because they allow your insurer to countercheck your injury claims. In fact, your claim can be denied if your medical reports differ from the injuries described in your accident report. Your insurer also wants to know whether or not you had illegal drugs in your system (at the time of your injuries), which may lead to a denial of your claim. Therefore, it's wise to have copies of these reports (get them from your claims administrator).
Your paychecks and time sheets are the factual records of how much money you would be earning if not for your disability. You need to have pay records for the period shortly before and shortly after your injury. The difference between the two will show how much the accident has affected your earnings. This is especially true if you aren't formally employed. They also form the basis for the calculations of the weekly benefits from your workers' compensation insurer.
All the Forms You Have Filled
Handling a workers' compensation claim involves filling several forms, such as the Federal Notice of Traumatic Injury, Time Analysis Form (for claiming compensation), Duty Status Report, and others. Consult with an attorney for help in knowing which forms you need in your particular case. Keep copies of all these forms for proof that you have completed all the necessary procedures and paperwork for your claim processes. It's also good to have them at hand in case other parties, such as your insurer, claims that it has lost them so that you don't suffer unnecessary delays.
Receipts for Out-of-Pocket Expenses
Lastly, you also need to keep records for out-of-pocket expenses. A good example is when you need to travel to meet with your medical doctor. Your insurer will not be by your side every step of the way to pay (up front) for all the things it should pay. In most cases, you will have to use your own funds and file for reimbursement.
These are some of the essential documents, but the list isn't exhaustive. This is just to show the importance of keeping copies of all the documents related to your injury and claim. Such a thorough preparation means that your claim process won't be facing any delay occasioned by you. Consult with a personal injury lawyer, like one from Swartz & Swartz P.C., for more advice on your case.