How Long Does It Take to File for Workers’ Comp in NC?


Dealing with a workplace injury can be incredibly stressful, both physically and emotionally. The added challenge of navigating the workers' compensation process only adds to this stress, especially with the many deadlines and varying requirements that accompany it.

In this blog post, we will explore the timeline for filing a workers' compensation claim in North Carolina, providing a clear overview of what injured employees can expect during this process.

Why Workers' Compensation Is Important

Workers' compensation is designed to protect employees from the financial strain resulting from workplace injuries or illnesses. It helps injured workers receive the necessary medical care and wage benefits to help them through their recovery, without having to navigate the complexities of lawsuits and lengthy legal battles.

Understanding the timeline of a workers' compensation claim in North Carolina is essential for those injured at work, as failing to adhere to deadlines can jeopardize your chances of receiving the benefits you deserve.

Workers' Compensation Claim Timeline in North Carolina

Below, we have broken down the workers' compensation claim process into key stages, providing a comprehensive understanding of the deadlines involved.

First Day

You should notify your employer about your injury or illness immediately after it occurs. Prompt reporting ensures that the process begins as soon as possible and prevents potential disputes about the legitimacy of the claim.

Your employer should direct you to a healthcare provider for treatment of your injuries. However, if your employer cannot identify a healthcare provider for you, ensure you seek appropriate care as soon as possible. You can visit your regular doctor or go to a hospital, but make sure to inform them that you were hurt at work.

Within Five Days

Your employer must file Form 19 with the workers' comp insurance provider, which they should provide a copy of to you, along with a Form 18 for you to fill out. Keep in mind that your claim for benefits does not start with the employer's filing of Form 19. Form 18 must be completed and sent to the North Carolina Industrial Commission to file for benefits.

If your employer does not provide you with Form 18, it can be obtained from the North Carolina Industrial Commission website. Be sure to consider seeking the guidance of an attorney to ensure that the form is filled out appropriately.

First Week

If you’ve suffered a work-related injury that has left you unable to work for seven days and you have filed for compensation, you are eligible for benefits.

Workers’ compensation benefits can include:

  • Medical care for as long as needed for work-related injury/illness
  • Disability benefits for as long as you’re unable to work
  • A lump-sum settlement if you’ve suffered permanent disability

However, navigating the legal and administrative aspects of workers’ comp cases can be a daunting task. That’s why it’s a good idea to seek the advice of a workers’ comp attorney who can provide guidance on how to proceed with your claim and defend your case if necessary.

21 Days

After being out of work for 21 days, you may receive compensation for the first seven days of missed work. However, if your employer denies your claim, the situation becomes complicated.

A knowledgeable workers' compensation lawyer can help you navigate the complex legal process and fight for your rights.

30 Days

If you suffer a work injury, it is important to act quickly and report it to your employer within 30 days. Waiting beyond this period could create difficulties in filing a workers’ compensation settlement.

If you have any doubts or concerns, be sure to work with a workers’ compensation lawyer to help you understand what to do in this situation.

Two Years

Reporting a work injury to your employer is important, but it's equally crucial to file a workers' compensation claim as soon as possible. If you fail to file a claim within the two-year time limit, you will lose the chance to recover any compensation or benefits related to your injury.

Don't let time slip by and jeopardize your rights as an injured worker - take action and file your workers' comp settlement promptly. It's important to be proactive and take advantage of the available benefits that can help you recover from your work injury.

Let Our Team Guide You

Dealing with a workers' compensation claim can be a challenging and confusing journey for anyone, and it can be difficult to know where to begin or what to expect. However, knowing the deadlines, submitting the correct forms, and understanding the stages involved can help alleviate stress.

At Jetton & Meredith PLLC, our experienced workers' compensation lawyers are here to guide you through the process and fight for your rights. We're committed to protecting our clients and will provide you with legal guidance every step of the way.

Don’t wait any longer. Get in touch with us by calling (704) 931-5535.