1. Do not postpone medical attention.  Seeking medical attention right away is not only the best thing for your health; it is also helpful when applying for workers’ compensation benefits.
  2. Decide whether or not you truly have a case.  A skilled workers’ compensation attorney can assist you with this.  Are you in pain?  Are you sick or injured as a result of a work-related illness or injury?  If so, you probably have a viable case.
  3. Partner with an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation cases.  Do not be afraid to ask questions. How long has the attorney been practicing in this area of law? What is the attorney’s background? You should feel confident and comfortable with the attorney you choose.
  4. Understand the workers’ compensation laws of your state.  The workers’ compensation system in New Jersey was designed to give injured workers quick medical attention and wage replacement benefits when they are unable to work due to a work-related illness or injury.  It is not necessary for an employee to prove that the employer committed negligence in order to collect benefits.  As long as the injury occurred during the course of employment, the injury is considered compensable under the New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Act.
  5. When your attorney asks you to do something, do it.  A skilled workers’ compensation attorney will want to see medical records, a detailed statement of what happened to cause the illness or injury, and any other documents/correspondence that pertains to your case.  When your attorney asks for information from you, provide it promptly. This will help your case to move along more efficiently.
  6. Start the process immediately.  Promptly complete the paperwork and submit it.  Doing so is an important first step in the process.  Getting assistance from a workers’ compensation attorney can be helpful as the paperwork can be confusing, time-consuming, and intimidating.
  7. Be proactive.  Do whatever you can to increase the likelihood that your claim will be approved.  Stay in touch with your attorney, keep good records, cooperate when asked for needed information, and report all developments in your case to your attorney.
  8. Know what you are signing before you sign it.  Before signing anything or making any decisions that could affect the outcome of your case, talk to your attorney.  A workers’ compensation attorney will advise you regarding all of the steps in the process.
  9. Communicate with your employer.  Tell your employer about your illness or injury right away and make sure it is properly documented.  Do not leave this up to your employer—make sure you complete the paperwork and check to see that it has been properly filed.  Be sure to keep copies of everything.
  10. Keep good records.  Document everything and keep a record of all correspondence, documentation and anything that is relevant to your case.  Provide your attorney with all documentation as well.