A worker is injured on the job every seven seconds and in 2017, more than 5,147 workers died while in the line of work, which equals to more than 14 deaths every day. Injuries can be anything from simple cuts to potentially disabling fractures that don’t only keep workers out of the job but also increase the lost production days of businesses.
But most importantly, accidents in the workplace affect the lives of the people involved in it. Fortunately, state law requires every employer to provide worker’s compensation coverage to its employees. So, if you get into an accident at work, make sure to take these necessary steps right away:
- Get treated immediately.
The moment you get into an accident, focus on the injuries first and have it assessed and treated by a first-aider. Companies usually follow a protocol when it comes to accidents and this includes calling an ambulance and assisting the worker in the hospital admission process. Even if you think that your injuries are small, it’s still important to have yourself checked by a qualified medical doctor.
- Make an accident report.
After getting initial treatment, it’s time to make an accident report. A lot of states only give a short period of time for workers to file an accident report to get eligible for worker’s compensation, so it’s very important to have this done right after you are in stable condition.
To make your accident report strong, it’s best to have a colleague stand as your witness and get copies of treatment records and provide photographs if you have them to prove your injuries. Experts even suggest that you still make an accident report even if you did not sustain any injuries because this will help your employer improve its safety rules to keep other workers from getting into the same accident.
- Ask help from an injury lawyer.
If you are going to file a compensation claim and ensure that you get your best chances at getting heard, these injury lawyers should be your best allies. The law can be very complex and hard to understand for a regular worker, which is why it’s necessary to hire the services of an injury lawyer who knows exactly what points to hit to give you a good shot at getting your claim. You also need to know that there are states that will bar lawsuits over workplace injuries, especially those where workers’ compensation insurance is required.
With this type of insurance, you don’t have to prove the negligence of your employer in causing the injury to get a claim because you can even get compensated even if the accident was a result of your own negligence. This is why it’s best to consult your case to a lawyer to know the right steps to take, should you need to escalate your claim to court.
- Think about submitting a grievance.
No matter how simple your accident was, it happened because of some sort of lapse in your company’s system. Whether it’s due to defective equipment or a lack of the right tools to use for lifting heavy objects, it’s your right to complain to your employer about it. A properly written grievance report will be appreciated by your employer and not held against you because you are only informing them of what needs to be improved.
- Always keep track of what you lost and spent due to the accident.
Being injured due to an accident can really take its toll on your entire family, especially if you’re the main source of income. Compensation is used to at least fill in these gaps and put you in a position before the accident happened.
So, it’s highly important to keep track of what you lost and spent during the time you were unable to work due to injuries. This includes the pay you lost for missed workdays, the chance of getting a promotion and all other losses incurred in this situation. Make sure to speak with your lawyer about how you can use your record to file for a stronger claim.
Accidents in the workplace can happen to anyone at any time and without warning. No matter how careful and safe you are, you can never guarantee that you won’t get injured due to an accident while at work. This is why you need to know the right steps to take to ensure that you get the best outcomes out of a workplace accident and most especially, claim what’s due to you.