If your injury requires any type of medical care, be sure to keep detailed records of all of these expenses.
No matter what line of work you’re in, workplace injuries can happen at any time. While many people think of warehouses, construction sites, and physical labor for these types of incidents, even office jobs pose numerous risks for injury. If you’re hurt when you’re on the job, it can be overwhelming to know what to do and where to start. This guide can help you protect yourself while ensuring you get the compensation you’re due for workplace injuries.
1. Notify Your Employer
The very first thing you should do when you are hurt or injured on the job is to notify your direct superior or employer immediately. This is true for all injuries, no matter how small or insignificant they may seem. Even a minor fall could lead to serious complications that could develop over time. If you fail to inform your employer of the accident when it occurs and then start to develop side effects later, you could be out of luck when it comes to financial compensation.
While a verbal notification is sometimes all that is possible in serious situations, it is best to notify your employer in writing. This helps start a paper trail that can save you from unnecessary frustrations in the future. Email is one of the best options because it provides an official time-stamped record for both you and your employer.
2. File a Worker’s Compensation Claim Form
Once your immediate health and safety are no longer a concern, the first step your employer should take is to offer you a Worker’s Compensation Claim Form. Fill this out right away, making sure that the document is complete before you leave the property if possible. If your employer does not have a workers’ compensation claim form, get in touch with a lawyer right away. This is a legal requirement for almost all business owners and those without current workers’ compensation insurance should be reported to the labor department in your state.
3. Contact a Trustworthy Legal Professional
Even if your employer does have active workers’ compensation insurance and is taking the proper steps to report your injury, it is still wise to reach out to a lawyer with experience in this area. Some injuries are out of everyone’s control, but others could be a result of negligence or hazardous working conditions. They could also be due to safety violations or a lack of proper training, such as ladder safety instruction or machinery operation basics. In these situations, you may be able to receive additional financial compensation.
Keep in mind that your employer also has the right to deny your claim in some situations. If you feel that you deserve compensation for your workplace injury but your employer has denied your claim, a lawyer may be able to help.
4. Keep Track of All Related Expenses
If your injury requires any type of medical care, be sure to keep detailed records of all of these expenses. These may include:
- Hospital, urgent care, or medical office visits
- Blood work or vaccinations
- Medical Equipment
- Surgeries or outpatient procedures
- Physical Therapy
You will likely need to report these expenses, especially if you are filing a legal claim. Keep in mind that workers’ compensation should cover all medical expenses, as well as other qualifying expenses.
Becoming injured or ill because of a workplace event or issue can be difficult, but acting quickly can help you prevent problems and setbacks that can delay your payments. Notify your employer in writing, fill out the necessary paperwork, find a lawyer, and keep track of all related expenses with care. Taking these steps can help you get the payout you deserve in a timely manner.