Whether you work at an office or a factory, you are at risk of suffering a work-related injury. Some jobs are considered more “unsafe” than others, like firefighters or coal miners. However, working within a four-wall office does not mean that you are completely out of danger’s way. When you suffer an injury while performing your job, then it is considered a work-related injury. Regardless of where you work, your employer will probably have some sort of insurance in place to avoid being held liable; especially when the chances of being sued for financial compensation or struggling with a bad reputation afterwards is not uncommon. As an employee, you should know your rights if you are ever faced with a similar situation.
Check below to know what you should do if you suffer a work-related injury:
Seek Medical Treatment
No matter how small you believe your injuries are, you should seek medical treatment right away. You could be suffering from internal bleeding without knowing after tripping on a loose carpet edge at your office. Compensation aside, your health and well-being should always be the priority. If your condition is not critical and allows for time to check with your employer first if you are supposed to go to a specific hospital or clinic, then it is preferred to do so to improve your position during a potential lawsuit.
Report the Injury ASAP
As a general rule, you usually have to report your claim against your employer for a work-related injury within 90 days of occurrence. However, since worker compensation laws vary from one country to the other, this exact period will also vary. It is always encouraged to report sooner rather than later to get a better chance at presenting strong evidence, like hospital reports and eyewitnesses who can testify for you. Your lawyer will need all such documents to build a strong case, and have a better chance of facing your employer’s army of lawyers.
Hire a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
If a work-related injury harmed you physically, mentally, or emotionally, you will need to hire a lawyer experienced in workers’ compensation to help you get the compensation owed to you As mentioned by professionals at Stewart Law Workers Comp Lawyers based in South Carolina, USA, you will need experts on your side to file the necessary paperwork as the compensation process can be complicated. What makes it even harder is that sometimes it is not easy to prove that your injury is a work-related one, and that is where your worker compensation lawyer’s experience will prove to be essential.
Consider Long-Term Effects of Your Injuries
If you suffered from a more serious accident that left you in bad shape, or perhaps disabled, your lawyer will use your doctor’s report supporting this claim to factor in “lost wages” in the compensation. Although nothing will reverse your disability, experienced worker compensation lawyers know how to push for the best compensation they can get for you to ensure you and your household’s wellbeing.
Follow Your Lawyers Instructions
You should have complete trust in the lawyer you hired, and do as they advise. You might rightfully fear to stand up to your employer even if you are doing it for the right reasons. However, you will be getting in your lawyer’s way, if you decide to go by your mind and not stick to the action plan they have devised. That is why it is very important to learn about your lawyer before hiring them, and make sure you can entrust them with your case.
Go Back to Work Once You Are Able To
Once your doctor gives you the green light to go back and resume your work, you should do so. Usually after getting into an accident that stops you from carrying out your original job, your employer will be bound by law to offer you another one that is suitable for your current state. However, if you do not report to work or refuse to take it, your employer will have the right to dismiss you on grounds of “refusal to work.” This will subject you to a worse situation than where you initially were with the work-related injury.
Everyone is vulnerable to suffering from work-related injuries at any given time, which makes it even more important to have enough knowledge about how to act then. You need to understand your responsibilities as well as your rights as an employee. Make a point of inquiring about this information when you are first signing the job offer. This will help you know what kind of an employer you are going to work for. You want to make sure that you are treated fairly as a human being, and not just a cog in a machine.