Six Things To Do After Getting Injured At WorkLast updated on: October 4, 2022
Although companies have safety procedures and policies to keep their employees as safe as possible, injuries still happen. While workers’ compensation is designed to compensate the injured, it may not cover all the medical or non-medical expenses you’ve accrued. Follow our six steps after an accident to ensure your compensation will be adequate.
If you’re wondering what to do after getting hurt at work, call Zinda Law Group today at 1-(888)-653-1650 for a free case evaluation with one of our work injury attorneys. Our workplace injury attorneys will work hard to ensure that you receive the compensation to which you are entitled, and if we don’t reach a favorable outcome in your case, you won’t owe us a dime.
1. Report Your Job Injury Immediately
Report the injury to your supervisor or HR department immediately. Tell them how it happened and the resulting injuries. Of course, if the injury is life threatening or requires immediate medical attention, make that an initial priority.
However, it is best practice to report the injury to your employer as soon as possible. Although it may be your inclination to not report minor injuries or minimize the injury in the report, it is better to always inform your employer and that you be as thorough as possible in your report, making certain that your report is detailed in a written form.
2. Seek Medical Help
Always seek any necessary medical treatment for your injuries, as soon as possible. Keep in mind that even if the injury does not seem extreme right now, there is always a chance that it could become a larger problem down the road.
By seeking medical treatment early on, you prevent your injury from becoming worse. Additionally, if you wait and your case becomes contentious, then your employer may use the fact that you waited to get medical treatment to argue that your injury was minor. When you seek medical treatment, inform the physician that the injury happened while you were at work so they can give you documentation regarding your injury.
3. Return To Work Only When You Are Able
If you return to work too early, you could agitate your injury or make it appear less serious than it is. Therefore, wait until a medical professional has told you it is safe to return to work.
4. Insurance Companies Are Not Your Friends
Remember, insurance companies make a profit by paying as little as possible when accidents occur. This includes your own insurance company. Even if the representative you speak with seems helpful and friendly, do not provide a detailed statement about the accident and do not accept compensation without first speaking with your attorney.
The insurance company of the employer will use your statements against you if it can. It will also try to use past work injuries against you by stating that your injury was a preexisting condition instead of a new injury. An attorney can fight such counterclaims and help you pursue maximum compensation.
5. Get Legal Representation
The workers’ compensation system can be a major benefit to injured employees, but filing a successful claim is not necessarily an easy task. Working with attorneys can take a heavy load off your shoulders.
In a workers’ compensation claim, several issues must be examined and are sometimes disputed. This can include the nature and extent of the injury, whether the claim was filed within the time specified under law, whether the injury arose in the course of the employment, and what exact damages the employee sustained. Workplace injury attorneys can help you stay on top of these issues and ensure that you are in a position to receive adequate compensation for your injuries.
Additionally, hiring an attorney can increase your chances of receiving compensation from other parties. Many people believe that filing a workers’ compensation claim is the only action available after being injured on the job, but that is not always the case: Sometimes other parties may also be liable, such as the manufacturers of the equipment that harmed you on the job, or another driver on the road that hit your delivery vehicle.
6. Filing Your Compensation Claim
By the time you reach this step you should already have two important pieces of documentation: the report you filled out with your employer and the documentation from your physician.
It is important that you collect all other documentation relating to the accident, such as any receipts from medications or proof of missed days of work. In addition, you may want to take pictures of the injuries and/or accident scene.
Your employers should have informed you about what you need to do after a workplace injury. If they did, follow their instructions precisely.
You have a limited amount of time to file your claim, starting from either the date of the injury or the date you became aware of the condition. The amount of time you have to file your claim depends on the state you live in, but you should start the process as soon as possible.
Of course, this process can be complex and confusing, which is why retaining a work injury lawyer is a great option. Experienced attorneys can help you navigate filing your claim, advise you on whether your claim is likely to be successful, and consider any third-party liability that may exist.
What is considered a work injury?
In the United States it is estimated that a worker is injured on the job every seven seconds, which equates to approximately seven million injuries a year. Of course, those numbers only represent the injuries that were reported by the employees.
Workplace injuries vary greatly in type, severity, and cause. Some injuries may leave an employee unable to work for just a few days, whereas others may leave an employee unable to work for the remainder of his or her lifetime.
What if my employer is unable or unwilling to assist?
Your employer might try to convince you to use your own health insurance to cover the expenses of your injury or to accept other perks or incentives to avoid filing a workers’ compensation claim. Refuse any such offers and pursue your claim.
If your employer still refuses, speak with a workers’ compensation attorney. Your employer might face penalization and owe you extra compensation for making the process more difficult for you.
Do I need to reveal any previous workplace injuries?
Yes, you must reveal any previous workplace injuries if you have been injured at work. Even if your prior injury was minor and unrelated to the present one, failure to disclose previous injuries on the job could bar you from collecting compensation for your current injury.
If you try to hide the fact that you were previously injured on the job, you might face a worse consequence than missing out on compensation. You might be held liable for fraud. When that happens, not only do you stop receiving workers’ compensation benefits, but you may have to pay back the benefits you received up to that point.
What are your responsibilities if you are hurt at work?
When you are hurt at work, it is your responsibility to report the incident. As we discussed, failure to report your injury could have dire consequences for your claim.
You must also receive medical treatment for your injuries. While your employer may be responsible for payment of your injuries, you must still make your doctor’s appointments on your own.
What is the most common injury in the workplace?
According to the National Safety Council, here are some examples of common workplace injuries and their causes:
- Soreness or pain: Experiencing pain, specifically chronic back pain, is an extremely common complaint among workers. Workers who sit in office chairs for hours a day may experience this, as well as workers who need to physically exert themselves all day.
- Cuts, punctures, or lacerations: Of course, these types of injuries can vary greatly in severity. Whether it is a cut that needs a Band-Aid or a laceration that calls for stitches, it is a common occurrence among many different fields.
- Sprains, strains, and tears: This kind of muscle damage is common among many different occupations. Whether the employee slipped at their waitressing job or was using an improper lifting technique at their warehouse job, these kinds of injuries are possible, and may require extensive therapy.
- Head injuries: Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries are relatively common, but they can be difficult to detect. Even if the employee retains consciousness, they nevertheless may have experienced a serious head injury. These injuries can become very serious if left untreated; thus it is important to seek medical attention as quickly as possible.
Need Help? Zinda Law Group May Help
If you have been injured at work, the experienced Phoenix personal injury attorneys at Zinda Law Group may be able to help. If your claim is not successful, then you will not owe us a dime. That is our “No Win, No Fee Guarantee.” To set up your free consultation with a workplace injury lawyer, call Zinda Law Group at (888) 241-6071 today.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.