Answers To Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Compensation In Ohio

June 16, 2017 | By O'Connor Acciani & Levy
Answers To Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Compensation In Ohio

Injured workers often have many questions about filing a workers' compensation claim. They may be unsure if their injury qualifies for benefits or what types of benefits might be available. They might also have questions about what to do if their initial claim is denied. Our Cincinnati workers' compensation lawyers have answers to these and other frequently asked questions about Ohio workers' compensation claims. After reviewing these answers, contact us to find out how we can help with your work injury claim.

What Types Of Injuries Are Covered?

Workers' compensation covers any injury that occurs in the course of your employment (Ohio Revised Code 4123.01(C)). This excludes the following injuries:
  • Psychiatric conditions that did not arise from an occupational injury
  • Injuries primarily caused by natural deterioration of tissues, organs or other body parts
  • Injuries that occur during an employee's voluntary participation in an employer-sponsored recreation or fitness activity
  • Self-inflicted injuries
  • Injuries that occur when the employee is intoxicated
  • Injuries caused by fighting or horseplay

Occupational Diseases

Workers are entitled to compensation for any disease contracted during the course of employment, provided the nature of employment puts the employee at greater risk of contracting the disease compared to the general public. These conditions are also called occupational diseases (Ohio Revised Code 4123.01(F)).

Aggravation Of A Preexisting Injury?

In some cases, a person's job causes a preexisting medical issue to become worse and affect his or her ability to do his or her job. This is compensable provided the employee can prove the aggravation was a result of an injury that occurred in the course of employment. Proof generally consists of clinical findings when the employee is evaluated by medical professionals.

How Do I File A Workers' Compensation Claim?

If you suffer an injury at work, the first thing you need to do is inform your employer. When informed of an on-the-job injury, most employers will complete a First Report of an Injury, Occupational Disease, or Death (FROI) form and submit it to the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC). In some cases, employers give the form to the employee for him or her to complete and submit to the BWC. If this happens, you can complete the form and mail it to any BWC service office to begin the workers' compensation process. You can also complete the FROI form online.

How Long Do I Have To File A Claim?

All workers' compensation claims are governed by a statute of limitations. This law sets a deadline for filing a claim. If you miss the deadline, you will be unable to file. The statute of limitations for an Ohio workers' compensation claim is two years from the date of the injury.

Statute Of Limitations For Occupational Disease Claims?

The statute of limitations for these claims is two years from the date the disability began and six months from the date a physician diagnosed the condition. If the disease causes the employee to die, an occupational disease claim must be filed within two years of death.

What Are The Types Of Workers' Compensation Benedits?

The Ohio BWC provides a variety of workers' compensation benefits to Ohio employees depending on the severity of your injury or disease. For instance, temporary total disability is for workers who are unable to work for a short period of time. Permanent total disability is for workers who are so severely injured that they can no longer work. Workers can also receive compensation for wages lost as a result of their injury.

When Will I Start Receiving Benefits?

The BWC will make a decision on your claim within 28 days of receiving it. If the claim is approved, you should receive your first check soon after receiving notification of the approval.

How Do I Appeal A Demoed Claim?

If your claim is denied, you have 14 days from the receipt of the decision to file an appeal with the Ohio Industrial Commission (IC) Online Network. You can also appeal in writing by downloading Notice of Appeal (IC-12), filling it out and sending to any IC office. After submitting your appeal, the IC will notify you of the date, time and location of your hearing before an officer of the IC. Prior to the hearing, witness affidavits, depositions and other evidence will be submitted to the officer. You may also be required to attend an independent medical examination. At the hearing, you and your employer can present witnesses. Your attorney may have you testify as well. Within seven days of the hearing, you will receive a written decision. If the denial is not overturned, you have 45 days to appeal to the staff hearing officer. If this appeal is unsuccessful, you can appeal for a Commission-level hearing. The Commission will decide whether to hear your appeal. If your appeal request is denied, you can appeal to state court within 60 days of the denial. If the commission holds a hearing and upholds the denial of your claim, you can also appeal to state court.

Contact Our Cincinnati Workers' Compensation Attorneys Today

An on-the-job injury can have a devastating effect on your career and your finances. If the injury is severe enough, you might never be able to return to your job. Even if you can return, you may have to work fewer hours or in a much more limited role. The experienced attorneys at our firm know how difficult it can be to manage the physical and financial effects of these injuries. That is why we are committed to helping injured workers recover all of the workers' compensation benefits they deserve. Your initial consultation with our firm is completely free and we do not charge legal fees unless you receive all of the compensation you deserve.