Sometimes the insurance company will deny a claim on the grounds that the injured employee did not timely report the injury to his employer. Failing to report the injury does not mean its barred. It means the insurance company doesn't want to pay your benefits and you will have to file a Claim with the Alaska Workers Compensation Board to obtain your benefits.
The Board will order the insurance company to pay benefits even if the injury is not reported within 30 days in a number of circumstances. One reason, discussed earlier in this blog, is if the Board finds that the insurance company and employer were not prejudiced by the late notice.
Another reason the Board will excuse late notice is called the "discovery rule". Sometimes a worker can be seriously injured, especially common in back injuries, and not feel anything painful at the time of the injury. As his back starts to hurt, he hopes that its just a strain and it'll go away by itself. But ,the nature of serious back injuries is that they tend to get worse over time so after weeks have passed, he realizes that there is something very wrong and he goes to the doctor. And the doctor tells him he has a slipped disc or a herniated disc or an annular tear. He reports it to his employer, who reports it to the insurance company, who denies the claim because it was not timely filed.
This fact pattern comes up regularly in workers compensation. And regularly the Board sides with the injured worker.
If this has happened to you, you need to hire an experienced Workers Compensation attorney.
If you have any questions regarding your case, the Law Office of Keenan Powell provides free consultations regardless of whether or not you have been controverted. To contact Keenan Powell, use the contact form on this page or call 258-7663.
For more information about Workers Compensation, see: http://www.keenanpowell.com/faq‑wc.html.