Should you suffer an injury on the job, you will likely be focused mainly on getting treatment for your injury. While this is important, it is also vital that you take steps to protect your legal rights. Although you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, this does not guarantee your employer will make the process easy for you along the way. To make sure you get the compensation you need and deserve, take the following steps after suffering a work-related injury.
Report Your Accident
Immediately upon being injured, report your accident to your supervisor so they can file an accident report. Not only will this document the circumstances surrounding your accident, but it will also protect your legal rights should you not display symptoms and experience health problems until weeks after your accident.
Consult a Doctor for Treatment
Even if you are not sure you are seriously injured, see a doctor within 24-48 hours of your accident to get your physical health assessed. If you don’t and later experience problems related to your accident, your employer and its insurance company will deny your problems are linked to your work accident.
Hire an Experienced Attorney
As soon as you can following your accident, hire a job site accident lawyer to handle your case. Once you do, your employer will know you will not be intimidated by their threats or those of their insurance company. Along with this, your lawyer can gather evidence related to your accident and examine it in great detail. Finally, your lawyer can arrange for experts to testify in court on your behalf if necessary, and can negotiate with your employer’s insurer to reach an excellent financial settlement.
Obtain Witness Statements
Since work-related injuries are not covered by workers’ compensation if it is found the injuries occurred when the injured person was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, make sure you obtain witness statements from others who can verify you were not guilty of horseplay or other irresponsible behavior. Also, when you are seeing a doctor to get treatment for your injuries, always make sure you are given tests to verify you did not have drugs or alcohol in your system at the time of your accident.
By taking each of these steps and listening to the advice of your attorney until your case is resolved, you can emerge from your workplace accident with your injuries healed, your reputation intact, and the financial compensation you need for yourself and your family.
Author information: Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on Twitter: @RachelleWilber