In Oregon, workers’ compensation law requires employers who have one or more employee(s) to carry workers’ comp insurance or be self-insured. Unfortunately, some employers fail to provide this insurance and protect their employees from the hardships associated with work injuries.
But if you’re hurt on the job and your employer doesn’t have workers’ comp insurance, you still have rights. Ransom, Gilbertson, Martin, and Ratliff, LLP is here to make sure you get the compensation to which you’re entitled.
Understanding the Challenge
Workers’ compensation in Oregon is designed to protect the rights of employees who become injured while on the job. If you’ve sustained an occupational injury or illness, workers’ comp insurance should provide financial compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Permanent disability
Because of legal requirements, most employers in Oregon purchase workers’ comp coverage through an insurance company such as SAIF. However, there are cases in which an employer will forget to renew their coverage or may willfully break state law, leaving workers like you vulnerable to the financial hardships associated with a workplace injury.
If you’re injured on the job with no workers’ comp insurance, you’re not alone. The experienced lawyers at RGMR will guide you through the claims process and ensure you get the compensation you rightfully deserve.
What You Should Do
If you’ve been injured at work, you’re entitled to benefits. Should your employer fail to provide you with adequate workers’ comp insurance, they will be subject to penalties by the Oregon Workers’ Compensation Division.
Here’s what to do immediately after an on-the-job accident:
- Notify your employer of your injury as soon as possible.
- Get medical attention to ensure there is a clear record of your injuries.
- Check your employer’s coverage status through the official Oregon proof of coverage database.
- Contact an expert workers’ comp attorney.
- File a workers’ compensation claim and any other relevant claims.
Know Your Rights
If you’re injured at work with no workers’ comp insurance to protect you from the burdens of treatment costs and lost wages, you still have rights. You can file a workers’ compensation claim and your employer is still responsible for the same benefits insured workers receive. But a workers’ comp claim isn’t your only legal avenue.
At RGMR, we’re here to ensure you get every penny you’re owed for the hardships you’re facing as a result of your injury. Depending on the circumstances of your case, other potential legal options we can pursue include:
- A personal injury claim: If your work injury is the result of negligence or improper actions on the part of your employer or another person, we may be able to file a personal injury claim on your behalf to seek compensation for damages.
- A third-party liability claim: If a person or entity other than your employer or co-worker caused your workplace injury or illness, we may be able to file a third-party liability claim against this “third party.”
Navigating the Process
Although the standard workers’ comp claims process may be somewhat more complicated if your employer doesn’t have workers’ compensation insurance, you’re still entitled to file a claim.
Here are the basic steps involved in the claims process:
Step 1: Fill out the 801 “Report of Job Injury or Illness” form. If your employer does not provide you with this form, you can download a copy from the state’s website. If you need help obtaining or filling out any documentation, our attorneys can help!
Step 2: If you’re unable to file directly with your employer because they’re refusing to report your injury, contact Ransom, Gilbertson, Martin, and Ratliff, or the state’s Benefit Consultation Unit, to learn about your rights and legal options.
Step 3: Seek medical attention for your injuries. You must see a medical doctor (MD), osteopathic doctor (DO), or podiatric physician. In most cases, you can choose your own doctor.
Step 4: If you don’t receive a letter of acceptance or denial within 60 days, you can file a request for a hearing with the Oregon Workers’ Compensation Board.
Step 5: Attend your hearing and explain your situation to the judge. Your chances of successfully arguing your case are significantly higher with an experienced Oregon workers’ comp attorney on your side!
In Oregon, it is unlawful for your employer to prevent you from filing a workers’ comp claim or attempting to fire you or discriminate against you in any way for trying to seek compensation after an injury.
If your employer is refusing to let you file a claim, you can contact the Oregon Workers’ Compensation Division or our team of workers’ comp attorneys at Ransom, Gilbertson, Martin, and Ratliff, LLP and we’ll help you file your claim. If they fire you or discriminate against you because you’re attempting to file a claim, we can help you file a complaint against your employer with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries.
We’re Here to Help
No worker should have to pay for negligence on the part of their employer. If you’ve sustained an injury or illness at work, you have every right to pursue fair compensation, even with no workers’ comp insurance. Hiring an attorney who specializes in workers’ rights in Oregon and has a proven track record of successful litigation will significantly increase your chances of receiving full benefits.
At Ransom, Gilbertson, Martin, and Ratliff, LLP, our attorneys are armed with over 75 years of combined experience. We’re committed to serving your best interests with compassion and determination.
Schedule a free consultation today to discuss your situation and get your questions answered. We’re here to advocate for you throughout the entire process and you won’t pay a single fee unless we win your case.