After you’ve sustained an injury, the last thing you feel like doing is sorting through piles of paperwork. Documents from the Insurer, your medical practitioners, receipts and the like may have you feeling overwhelmed. However, keeping thorough records is extremely important for your claim.
You will be required to submit many documents to your Employer and/or the Insurer – whether that’s a Workers’ Compensation Insurer following a work injury, a Compulsory Third Party (“CTP”) Insurer following a motor vehicle accident, or a Public Liability Insurer following an injury that occurred in a public place.
You will need to submit an incident report or report of injury, which provides your Employer and/or the Insurer with detailed information regarding how your injury occurred.
It is essential you keep a record of any witnesses to your injury, including their contact details. There is nothing worse than knowing someone can corroborate your version of events, but being unable to get in contact with them.
You may be asked to provide a Statement, which includes further information regarding the circumstances of your injury. We recommend you do not sign any Statement until your Solicitor has reviewed it. Keeping a copy of this Statement is useful as it can be used to refresh your memory down the track.
The Insurer will send you various correspondence such as letters confirming your claim number and Case Manager contact information, details of medical appointments with Independent Doctors and liability notices advising whether your claim has been accepted or declined.
Your treating practitioners will need your claim number to invoice your Insurer for any treatment provided to you, such as GP appointments, physiotherapy sessions or psychological counselling.
Your Case Manager details will come in handy if you need to call or email them to ask any questions about your claim, such as why your weekly payment has been delayed or when you can expect to receive reimbursement of expenses.
Any liability notices should be forwarded onto your Solicitor, either for your file, or so a decision to decline liability can be challenged on your behalf. These notices should be kept for your records.
You should also keep a record of all documents received from your medical practitioners. This could include referrals from your GP, specialist reports, imaging reports and letters to the Insurer requesting it pay for surgery or inpatient treatment.
You will be required to submit Certificates of Capacity on a regular basis. These Certificates outline your injury, treatment and most importantly, your capacity to work. Workers Compensation and CTP Insurers will use these Certificates to ascertain what weekly payments you are entitled to.
You should also keep a copy of any reports from Independent Doctors that either the Insurer or your Solicitor have you assessed by.
It is helpful to keep a record of your payslips, PAYG summaries and tax returns, from at least the year prior to, and the years after, your injury. The Insurer will use these records to calculate the amount of your weekly payments, and your Solicitor can use these as evidence of the financial loss caused by your injury.
You should also hold onto any receipts for medical treatment and medications that you have paid for directly, so you can claim reimbursement from the Insurer. Likewise, if you need to travel to attend an appointment arranged by the Insurer or your Solicitor, you should keep your expenses receipts. You can claim reimbursement for travel (including per kilometre car expenses), accommodation and reasonable meal expenses.
Just hold onto them…
Whether you keep hard copies or scanned copies of documents relating to your injury, it pays to keep your paperwork in order.