Insured Solutions
Insured Solutions

Should your client report a workers’ comp claim late? If they do, is there a penalty?

Your client should always report injuries or complaints of pain even if they are treated on site. If a band-aid was applied and the employee went right back to work, no claim is necessary, but the incident should be documented in a First Aid log.

Injuries handled offsite, need a First Report of Injury, submitted to the workers’ comp carrier within 24 hours after the employee is hurt.

Claims may be reported late for a number of reasons that have nothing to do with the employer. But as soon as management finds out about the injury, it must be reported to the WC carrier.

To encourage timely reporting, fines and/or penalties are assessed by the carrier and possibly the state and federal DWCsto the employer for reporting late. Regardless of the state, penalties for not reporting an injury other than a "band-aid" injury vary but can run from $2,000 for a periodic late report up to $400,000 in CA for systemic non-reporting.

To avoid late reports from employees, employers should make it clear in their employee handbook that injuries must be reported immediately. It’s difficult to investigate a “stale” accident/injury and ultimately control of that claim’s cost slips out of the employer’s hands.