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  • Writer's pictureRobert Schuerger II

How to File a Lawsuit for Workers' Compensation in TN

Tennessee's workers' compensation system provides financial assistance and medical benefits to workers who sustain injuries or illnesses on the job. 

It compensates for all kinds of damages, including construction site mishaps, a repetitive stress injury like carpal tunnel syndrome from factory work, or any other work-related incident.

Step 1: Receiving Medical Treatment 

Step 1: Receiving Medical Treatment 

The journey toward recovery after a work-related injury begins with seeking medical treatment. Injured employees must seek medical attention immediately. Their employer may have a list of authorized treating physicians they can visit. 

Swift action can also help diagnose and treat injuries effectively, preventing potential complications down the road. Plus, it creates an official document the plaintiff can use during negotiations with the other party's insurance company.

Step 2: Reporting the Injury to the Authorities 

Timing is crucial when it comes to reporting a work-related injury in Tennessee. Victims must inform their employer or supervisor about what happened within 15 days of the incident.

This notification should be in writing and include critical details such as the date, time, location, and nature of the casualty. Their signature on the notice confirms the accuracy of the information provided. 

Step 3: Filing Form C-20 (First Report of Injury Form)

After reporting the injury, the employer has only one day to complete and submit Form C-20 to their insurance company. This form serves as the official documentation of the incident and initiates the workers' compensation claim process. 

Victims must make sure their employer fulfills this obligation quickly to avoid delays in receiving benefits and medical care.

Step 4: Accepting or Rejecting the Workers' Compensation Claim 

Once the employer submits Form C-20, the other party's insurance company has 15 days to review and decide whether to accept or reject the workers' compensation claim. 

This period can be nerve-wracking for victims, as it determines their access to essential benefits. Plaintiffs must stay informed throughout the process and be prepared to take action if needed.

Step 5: Filing a Request Process 

However, victims shouldn't lose hope if insurance companies reject their workers' compensation claims. There are steps they can take to appeal the decision and fight for their rights.

  • Claimants must start by discussing the rejection with their employer to understand the reasons behind it. It's possible that a simple mistake on the paperwork led to the denial, which both parties can often fix through cooperation.

  • Still, if they can't mutually resolve, the next step is filing a Petition for a Benefits Determination with the Tennessee Bureau of Workers’ Compensation within one year of the injury date. This formal process involves presenting evidence and arguments to support the Tennessee Workers' Compensation Act.

  • In some cases, a mediator might have to help settle the case. If both parties cannot resolve the dispute through mediation, the authority will issue a Dispute Certification Notice (DCN). The plaintiff must complete the DCN within five days of receiving it.

  • Under Tennessee law, the claimant will have only 60 days to request a formal Compensation Hearing with the court after the mediator files the DCN with the Tennessee Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.

During this hearing, a judge will review the evidence and ultimately decide if the injured employee will receive workers' compensation benefits.

Injured Workers Should Always Hire Personal Injury Attorneys 

In times of distress and uncertainty following a work-related injury, victims often find themselves dealing with a ton of challenges. 

However, the guidance and support of a personal injury attorney can make all the difference in such trying times. They are well-equipped to handle the complexities of the legal system on behalf of their clients. They're also able to assist with how to file a lawsuit for premises liability in TN.

When it comes to seeking workers' compensation benefits, it's easy for someone unfamiliar with the process to make mistakes. 

On top of that, insurance companies are notorious for offering low settlement amounts to victims in hopes of trying to minimize their financial liability. 

However, lawyers know how to negotiate effectively and ensure victims recover the maximum workers' compensation insurance coverage amount from the at-fault party.

What Will the Injured Worker Recover in Damages? 

What Will the Injured Worker Recover in Damages? 

One of the main components of workers' compensation insurance coverage for employees is for medical expenses.

This usually includes doctor visits, surgeries, hospital stays, medications, and any other necessary medical treatments related to the injury. 

Injured employees must keep thorough records of all medical expenses incurred as a result of their wounds to ensure they are fully compensated according to Tennessee law. For more information, a Nashville workermans compensation attorney may be able to help.

Lost Wages

Injuries sustained on the job often result in time away from work, leading to lost wages.  Workers' compensation typically provides coverage for a portion of these lost wages, helping to alleviate the financial burden placed on injured workers and their families. 

The amount of lost wage benefits varies depending on factors such as the severity of the wound and the worker's average weekly earnings. 

In some cases, the victim may receive temporary disability benefits instead of lost income reimbursement. This is when the authorized treating physician reduces the victim's hours of work. 

Permanent Disability Benefits

On the other hand, if an injury results in permanent impairment that affects a worker's ability to earn a living, the court may award permanent disability benefits. 

These benefits compensate the injured worker for the long-term impact of their injuries on their earning capacity and quality of life.

Vocational Rehabilitation

Some workers may need vocational rehabilitation services to help them return to work or transition to a new occupation that accommodates their limitations. 

These services may include job training, job placement assistance, and counseling to help employees regain their independence and financial stability.

It's important to understand the specific damages recoverable by an injured worker may vary depending on different factors. 

The list includes the nature and severity of the wound, state laws, and the terms of the Tennessee workers' compensation policy. 


Victims must remember that workers' compensation insurance coverage exists to protect workers in times of need. Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys can also help with how to file a lawsuit for wrongful death in TN.

It doesn't matter if the injured employee suffered a minor scrape or a more serious wound. Every person has the right to seek financial support for medical care and their physical and emotional losses. 

With that in mind, victims can file a workers' compensation claim against the liable party with the help of Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys. Stating, "We Go to War for You," its professionals ensure clients receive fair treatment throughout the lawsuit.


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