It started off just like any other day. You woke up, got ready for work, and then made your daily commute to your place of employment. You clocked in and began your work tasks. That is, until you slipped and fell on a puddle in the middle of the workroom floor. The ceiling had been leaking for months and your employer failed to fix it. What do you do now? The steps that you take immediately following a work related injury are very important and could set the tone for the rest of your legal case.
Receive medical help
Your health and safety is the most important thing. Medical help should be sought as soon as possible. If there are worked nearby, request them to call for medical help. If you are alone, attempt to make it to a phone for help. When the responders arrive, carefully explain everything that happened and inform them or any current medical conditions that they should be aware of. If possible, provide them with your current medical history and a list of any medications that you are currently taking. This will speed up your medical care.
Contact your employer
Once you have received medical help, you can inform your employer of the accident. It is possible that they are already aware of the accident, or they might still have no idea. This call should simply be for informative purposes. Do not overly share any information, such as your plans for legal action or your current medical state, at least until you have spoken with a worker compensation lawyer. Your worker compensation lawyer may advise you to keep everything confidential for the time being.
Contact a worker compensation lawyer
If you were injured on the job, you are liable to compensation. Worker?s compensation pays 100% of medical costs for injured workers and pays cash benefits for lost work time after a 3 to 7 day waiting period. However, it is important to file correctly for worker compensation. This requires the specialized experience of a workers compensation attorney.
Your employer may offer you the services of their on staff workers compensation lawyer. However, you may still want to consult with your own workers comp attorney to ensure that you rights are being protected. The workers compensation attorney provided by your employer will firstly protect the employer?s needs, and not yours. This is generally a conflict of interest.
Document any and all records
Workers compensation legal cases are usually disputes around the facts of an accident. The employer attempts to prove that they were not at fault or that the worker?s injuries sustained were not from the said accident. The worker attempts to prove that they were, in fact, injured on the job, and that they sustained injuries or medical time off from the accident. It is important and necessary to document everything from the accident. Keep all medical records. It can also be helpful to provide your worker compensation attorney with current medical records.
If your employer attempts to offer a settlement amount, ensure that you are receiving just compensation. Generally, wages and salaries make up about 70% of compensation costs, benefits make up the remaining 30% of compensation. Other costs, like medical or other incurred costs should also be considered when evaluating a settlement amount possibility.
Every day, an employee is injured on the job. Every day, a workers compensation legal dispute is settled. In fact, benefit payments under workers? compensation programs totaled $60.2 billion in 2011, which was a 3.4% increase from the revised 2010 benefit figure of $58.2 billion. When you are dealing with an injury from your place of employment, you will find that it is crucial to have your own worker compensation lawyer. They will protect your rights and ensure that you are receiving what you are owed.