Not everyone reports workplace injuries immediately. If you experienced an accident while on the job, you may not have felt pain right afterward. Or, you may have felt minor pain that you pushed through to the best of your ability. Yet, it’s easy for injuries to worsen, and yours may now prevent you from performing your duties.

You might worry it’s too late to report your injury to your employer and file a workers’ compensation claim. While doing so becomes difficult outside state guidelines, it’s not impossible.

Reporting guidelines

In Illinois, you have 45 days to report your injury to your employer. If you fail to do so, you run the risk of losing eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits. Yet, there are exceptions to this rule. For instance, your injury may have stemmed from repetitive motion, like carpal tunnel syndrome. Or, you may have experienced a traumatic or internal injury that you didn’t notice right away. The symptoms of such injuries often show up days or weeks after an accident. In these cases, it’s more difficult to prove the date when they arose. Once a doctor determines your job caused your injury, it’s crucial to report it to your employer.

Potential challenges

If you report your injury outside Illinois’ statute of limitations, your employer may challenge it. Since you didn’t report your injury right away, they may think it’s false. Yet, beyond delayed symptoms, you may still have a chance for recourse. Your supervisor may have noticed you injure yourself. Or, your workplace might have failed to post workers’ compensation regulations. In these cases, you could make a claim beyond the state’s deadline due to your employer’s negligence.

Workplace injuries involving repetitive motion or delayed symptoms often face scrutiny. But it’s crucial to fight for proper workers’ compensation coverage when they start impacting you. A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you understand your right to recourse.