Workers' Compensation

ORS 656.265
Notice of accident from worker


(a) Notice of an accident resulting in an injury or death shall be given immediately by the worker or a beneficiary of the worker to the employer, but not later than 90 days after the accident. The employer shall acknowledge forthwith receipt of such notice.


Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this subsection, if an injured worker has not submitted a claim under this chapter but has submitted a claim to a health benefit plan that provides benefits to the worker, and the health benefit plan rejects the claim as being work related, the injured worker may file a claim under this section within 90 days from the date the health benefit plan rejects the claim. If a claim filed under this section is denied, the workers’ compensation insurer or self-insured employer shall inform the health benefit plan of the denial and the health benefit plan shall process the claim for payment in accordance with the terms, conditions and benefits of the plan.


The notice need not be in any particular form. However, it shall be in writing and shall apprise the employer when and where and how an injury has occurred to a worker. A report or statement secured from a worker, or from the doctor of the worker and signed by the worker, concerning an accident which may involve a compensable injury shall be considered notice from the worker and the employer shall forthwith furnish the worker a copy of any such report or statement.


Notice shall be given to the employer by mail, addressed to the employer at the last-known place of business of the employer, or by personal delivery to the employer or to a foreman or other supervisor of the employer. If for any reason it is not possible to so notify the employer, notice may be given to the Director of the Department of Consumer and Business Services and referred to the insurer or self-insured employer.


Failure to give notice as required by this section bars a claim under this chapter unless the notice is given within one year after the date of the accident and:


The employer had knowledge of the injury or death;


The worker died within 180 days after the date of the accident; or


The worker or beneficiaries of the worker establish that the worker had good cause for failure to give notice within 90 days after the accident.


The issue of failure to give notice must be raised at the first hearing on a claim for compensation in respect to the injury or death.


The director shall promulgate and prescribe uniform forms to be used by workers in reporting their injuries to their employers. These forms shall be supplied by all employers to injured workers upon request of the injured worker or some other person on behalf of the worker. The failure of the worker to use a specified form shall not, in itself, defeat the claim of the worker if the worker has complied with the requirement that the claim be presented in writing. [1965 c.285 §30a; 1971 c.386 §2; 1981 c.854 §18; 1995 c.332 §29; 2003 c.707 §1; 2015 c.259 §1]

Notes of Decisions

To establish employer knowledge, claimant needs to establish only employer knowledge of injury, not knowledge claim would result. Baldwin v. Thatcher Construction Co., 49 Or App 421, 619 P2d 682 (1980); Hayes-Godt v. Scott Wetzel Services, 71 Or App 175, 691 P2d 919 (1984), Sup Ct review denied

Knowledge of injury must be sufficient to alert employer of possibility of workers' compensation claim. Argonaut Ins. Co. v. Mock, 95 Or App 1, 768 P2d 401 (1989), Sup Ct review denied

Where claimant was employee, stockholder and manager of corporate employer, claimant satisfied injury notice requirement by notifying employer, and claim was not barred notwithstanding failure of employer to notify insurer of claim. Barney's Karts, Inc. v. Vance, 110 Or App 62, 821 P2d 422 (1991)

Requirement that worker give employer written notice of "when and where and how" injury occurred is satisfied if written information, viewed as whole, provides enough detail about when, where and how injury occurred to put employer on notice that worker may have sustained compensable injury. Vsetecka v. Safeway Stores, Inc., 337 Or 502, 98 P3d 1116 (2004)

Notice consisting of report or statement secured from worker need not be in written form. Godfrey v. Fred Meyer Stores, 202 Or App 673, 124 P3d 621 (2005), Sup Ct review denied

There is no requirement under this section that claimant must present medical evidence to establish "good cause" for failure to give timely notice; it is for Workers' Compensation Board to decide whether board is persuaded by evidence that is in record, regardless of if record includes medical evidence. Lopez v. SAIF, 281 Or App 679, 388 P3d 728 (2016)

As used in this section, "compensable injury" means condition that results from accident. Brown v. SAIF, 361 Or 241, 391 P3d 773 (2017)

To support good cause for late notice of work injury, claimant's subjective belief as to employer's response to injury report must be objectively reasonable. Kuralt v. SAIF, 290 Or App 479, 415 P3d 1077 (2018)

Law Review Citations

32 WLR 217 (1996)

§§ 656.001 to 656.794

Law Review Citations

55 OLR 432-445 (1976); 16 WLR 519 (1979); 22 WLR 559 (1986)

Chapter 656

Notes of Decisions

Party having affirmative of any issue must prove it by preponderance of evidence unless legislature fixes some different quantum of proof. Hutcheson v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 288 Or 51, 602 P2d 268 (1979)

Amendments to existing statutes and enactment of additional statutes by 1995 legislation generally apply to pending cases and to orders still appealable on June 7, 1995, effective date. Volk v. America West Airlines, 135 Or App 565, 899 P2d 746 (1995), Sup Ct review denied

Amendments to existing statutes and enactment of additional statutes by 1995 legislation do not extend or shorten procedural time limitations with regard to actions taken prior to June 7, 1995, effective date. Motel 6 v. McMasters, 135 Or App 583, 899 P2d 1212 (1995)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Benefit unavailability for inmates engaged in prison work programs, (1996) Vol 48, p 134

Law Review Citations

24 WLR 321, 341 (1988); 32 WLR 217 (1996)


Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021