Indiana Workers’ Compensation Benefits Process

Important: We updated this article in April 2023 so all the information below is current and correct. If you were hurt or got sick on the job in the Hoosier State, here’s the information you need to get the Indiana workers’ compensation benefits you’re entitled to.



Am I Eligible for Indiana Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

Indiana workers’ compensation insurance covers all full-time, part-time, temporary and seasonal employees from their first day on the job, except:

  • Railroad workers.
  • Independent contractors.
  • State employees (i.e., highway patrol officers, elected officials, etc.).
  • Truck drivers injured while passing through Indiana that neither reside there nor work for an employer based in this state.
  • Injuries that arise from intoxication, self-harm or criminal acts.

Read more about how to qualify for workers’ comp.

Pro Tip: Federal employees in Indiana are exempt from this coverage. Get the details for filing a federal workers’ comp claim.

How Do I File an Indiana Workers’ Compensation Claim?

If your workplace injury or illness requires emergency or urgent care, seek medical treatment immediately.

Pro Tip: Tell the doctor your injury or illness is work-related and keep your receipts and bills.

While every case is different, the Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) says you must follow this workplace accident claims process:

  1. Inform your employer about your injury or illness as soon as possible. Written reports are better (to protect your rights). Include the date, time and location of your injury or illness, and the names of any witnesses.
    Pro Tip: You may lose your right to Indiana workers’ compensation benefits unless you notify your employer within 30 days.
  2. Ask which doctor can treat you. If you go to a doctor who isn’t authorized by your employer’s insurance company, then you’re responsible for paying medical bills.
  3. Make sure your supervisor notifies the WCB and their insurer promptly. Your employer must submit a written accident report to the Board. If you miss more than one day of work, your employer must also submit a report to their insurance provider. This officially starts the clock on your workers’ comp claim.
    Pro Tip: Your deadline to file an Indiana workers’ compensation claim is two years from the day you reported your illness or injury.
  4. Wait for a decision. The insurance carrier has 30 days from your employer’s injury report date to investigate your claim. If approved, the insurer should mail your first check 15 days after your report data.
  5. Take action if your claim’s denied. You have three options for appealing: mediation, informal disputes, and formal hearings. Complete the appeal form on the Board’s website and follow the directions closely.
    Pro Tip: If you’re confused or worried, hire an Indiana workers’ comp lawyer to help you appeal.

What Else Should I Know About Indiana Workers’ Compensation?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics analyzes workers’ comp data on most U.S. states and territories. The total number of recordable cases in the Hoosier State decreased during COVID-19, dropping from 82,900 in 2019 to 75,800 in 2021. Claims in the service-providing sector dipped slightly during the same period, from 46,300 to 43,200. The total number of employees missing work, transferring jobs or receiving restrictions, followed a different path, rising from 41,100 at the start to 44,000 in 2020 before receding to 40,900 in 2021.

When you’re dealing with a work-related illness or injury, navigating the Indiana workers’ compensation system can make the discomfort and frustration even worse. You may want to hire an experienced attorney to help you get maximum benefits faster. Your lawyer can negotiate with insurers, gather medical evidence to support your claim, and represent you at hearings.

Pro Tip: Workers’ comp attorneys don’t charge unless you win benefits. You pay a reasonable, one-time fee only if your case is successful. See how a free workers’ comp evaluation works.

Want free expert claim help while you’re at home? Click the button below to sign up for a free phone call during regular weekday business hours:

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Margot Lester is the CEO of The Word Factory, a B2B & B2C content marketing agency that provides services for Fortune 100 brands, healthtech companies and SaaS developers. An award-winning business and brand journalist, she writes for daily and weekly newspapers and business journals, national magazines, in-flight publications and leading websites. Margot is also an in-demand writing coach and organizational communications trainer, helping individuals and teams write more effectively. Twitter/X: @word_factory LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/margotlester.