This page provides answers to the following questions:
- I had an accident at work. How do I file a workers compensation claim in DC?
- Should my employer have workers compensation insurance? How do I know I am covered?
- What are the conditions that enable me or prevent me from claiming benefits under my state’s law?
- What benefits might I be eligible to recieve?
- How much time do I have to file my claim? What are the stages of the claim process? What should I expect?
- If I’m not happy with the determination, how do I appeal?
Immediately report your work-related injury to your employer. Your employer then has 10 days to report the injury to their insurer using Form LWC-WC IA-1.
All employers are required to have workers compensation insurance or be approved to self-insure. Full-time, part-time, seasonal, and minor employees are covered by workers compensation. Subcontractors and certain independent contractors may be considered employees if they are involved in the pursuit of the employer’s trade, business or occupation or if they are performing substantial manual labor.
Some employees are exempt from workers compensation including:
- Domestic employees
- Most real estate salespeople
- Uncompensated officers and directors of certain non-profit organizations
- Public officials
- Most volunteer workers
The law covers both mental and physical injuries from accidents and occupational diseases. A mental injury must be the result of a physical injury or a sudden, unexpected, and extraordinary stress related to the employment.
The injury must arise out of and be within the course and scope of your employment. The injury must not have been intentional, the result of intoxication, provoked, or a result of horseplay.
If your injury or illness is found to be job-related, you may be entitled to receive medical care for the injury or illness, disability compensation for a portion of your lost wages, rehabilitation services, and, in the event of your death, benefits payable to your survivors. The maximum weekly rate is $865.31.
You have 30 days after your injury to report it to your employer. However, you should report it immediately. Your employer then has 10 days to report the injury to their insurer using Form LWC-WC IA-1.
You may choose your own physician, but once you choose, you may not change the physician unless you get approval from your employer’s insurance company or the Office of Workers’ Compensation.
Before going through the formal legal process, you should consider a mediation conference. More information, along with a choice of mediators, can be found from the Office of Workers Compensation.
If you are unhappy, you may request a hearing before a worker’s compensations judge by filing Form 1008.
If you are unhappy with the medical benefits, you should file Form 1009.