Verify Your Information
If you were recently injured or suffered an accident in the past, it is important that your attorney be able to verify the account of what happened for you to claim benefits under the Defense Base Act. Workers’ compensation insurance companies may attempt to deny legitimate claims for any number of reasons so it is vital that your attorney have access to all the resources necessary to successfully prosecute a claim on your behalf. In unfortunate cases where injured workers have their claims denied, the only option may be to take your claim before a Federal Administrative Law Judge and secure a judgement in your favor. Before any of this is possible, you will have to furnish your attorney with as much information as possible to create the strongest case possible. Verifying your claim is an important step and an ongoing process as your claim proceeds. Much of what is expected from the injured worker is to provide concrete documentation about when the injury occurred, when the employer was informed, and what medical treatment was sought and when.
Important Documents You Will Need From The Moment Of Injury
● Notice of injury – Among the very first sets of documents you can provide your attorney is the notice of injury you provided to your employer about the injury. Our firm strongly encourages injured overseas workers to inform their employer as soon as possible about the injury and to do so in a way that can be documented.
● Incident reports – Another crucial piece of documentation you should acquire for your attorney is the incident report about your injury. Obtaining incident reports can help to show an actual event occurred and the employer has acknowledged such.
● Medical and clinical records – Medical documentation of the injury is vital to helping prove your work accident caused an injury. Having these records helps your attorney and claims adjusters verify an injury was sustained.
● Correspondence with the employer – Emails, letters, and other documents can prove your employer had knowledge of your injury even if they fail to create an incident report about your injury.
Documenting Your Medical Treatment
Documenting your medical treatment from the moment of injury through your recovery is extremely important to verifying you suffered a workplace injury. Employers and their insurance companies may deny an injury took place in the course of the employee’s work duties or attempt to downplay the extent of the injury. Make sure to keep the following in mind when seeking medical treatment after an accident overseas.
● Your employer’s consent – If you were given permission to visit your installation’s clinic by your employer, there may be some sort of correspondence between you and your employer to help verify your injury.
● Get copies of all your records before you leave your assignment – Before you return home from overseas, make sure to get copies of all available medical records. Once you leave the country, obtaining these documents may be all the more difficult.
● Seek medical treatment immediately when you get home – Upon your arrival back home, your local medical records can help show you continued to seek medical treatment immediately on arrival.
Emphasize Your Condition
When medical treatment [Compensation for Medical Treatment page link] is sought, it is important to emphasize and make clear to doctors exactly why you are seeking treatment. Do not assume your doctor or treating physician will diagnose all of your symptoms without your help.
Tell your doctor about the type of work you do and how you believe it relates to your injury. When seeing the doctor, make sure:
● You are concise, be direct and to the point about what your ailment is
● You tell the doctor exactly what your injury is
● Where the pain you are experiencing is
● What is the cause of the injury
Doctors are medical professionals trained to make inferences about medical conditions based on the patient’s lifestyle and environment. Make sure your doctor knows all the pertinent information related to your injury so he or she can make the most informed diagnosis.
Important Points of Emphasis to Help Verify a Claim
When collecting all the information [Documentation & Presentation Process page link] needed to verify your claim, make sure to keep a few important things in mind. Understanding a few basic principles may go a long way in helping verify the facts of your claim and give you a better chance of recovery.
● Time frames – Establish exactly when the accident occurred and how quickly you sought medical treatment, both should be done as soon as possible
● Work being done – Getting ahold of an incident report about your injury can help document the type of work you were performing that led to your accident or condition
● Event that occurred – Your notice of injury, employer incident report, and medical documentation all go a long way to proving you employer was aware that some event took place
● Work environment – You want to show you incurred some kind of condition from the work environment you were surrounded by
Verifying and Preserving Your Injury Claim
If you or a loved one suffered an injury overseas while working on a U.S. military base, a federal work project, or as a military contractor for a foreign nation cooperating with the U.S., you may be entitled to compensation for your lost wages and medical bills. While these benefits are your right under the Defense Base Act, employers and their powerful insurance companies often deny otherwise legitimate claims for unfair reasons.
Contact our office for a consultation about your case. Our attorneys have spent years helping workers injured overseas in their country’s service obtain the vital benefits needed to provide for themselves and their families. Strict time deadlines do apply in Base Defense Act workers’ compensation claims so please contact our office as soon as possible so we can help preserve your claim and get you the compensation you deserve.