On-the-job injuries occur more than you think. Many people who are employed are not prepared in the case that a workplace accident occurs and someone is injured. This has the potential of becoming a problem. When a worker is injured while working, here are some steps they should take and ones they shouldn’t. Unfortunately, the most frequent mistakes are the ones that can result in a significant reduction in their potential settlement.
There are a variety of important factors to remember when a workplace injury happens and who better to help you understand this than work injury attorneys. Before moving forward with any legal claim, especially related to workers’ comp, get legal advice. Being upfront and honest with everyone is your best bet.
Below are some of the top mistakes a worker makes after they are hurt while working and in the process of pursuing a workers’ compensation claim.
Reporting A Workplace Injury Too Late
The most frequent mistake people typically run into is failing to notify your employer of an injury immediately after an accident. Regulations related to workers’ comp in most states require an injured worker to report an accident that results in injury to their supervisor before 30 days. If the injury is related to a job-related ailment, you must report the first symptoms of illness before 90s days to be eligible for a claim. While these deadlines are in place, there are a few rare exceptions. However, it’s a general rule of thumb to report your injuries immediately, so you are not battling for the compensation that is owed to you. You need to understand that companies are already wary of injuries claims related to work, given the high volume of claims that come up at work. You do not want anyone questioning whether or not your injury is legit if you wait too long to disclose it.
You shouldn’t expect to be fired if you report your workplace injury right away, or that you’ll feel better with a good night’s sleep. Even if an injury seems insignificant, reporting it as soon as possible can assist if your health worsens with time.
Withholding Knowledge Of Previous Injuries
Another very common mistake that someone injured during work will do is failing to report any past job injuries. Even if this past accident was small or you were injured but didn’t disclose it because you were afraid of being fired, failing to report a previous event might result in your compensation being fully lost. It’s even possible that you are charged with fraud if you don’t let your employer know about a past injury or injuries. It’s very likely that you’ll miss out on compensation, as well as having to reimburse whatever worker’s compensation funds you’ve previously received.
When filling out medical records documents pertaining to a doctor’s appointment or dealing with a case manager, be honest about any previous work-related injuries. Even if you’re providing information about a condition that has nothing to do with your past injury, you have a legal responsibility to do so. This information will be used by the employer’s insurance company to deny your claim, claiming that your injury was caused by a pre-existing condition and not from a preset-day injury at work. This is known as a “Major Contributing Cause (MCC)”, and is a common denial term.
Batting a worker’s compensation fraud is much more difficult than arguing about an MCC and whether or not it was work-related.
Failing to Report All Injuries: Past & Present
Not reporting the full degree of your workplace injury to your doctor is another frequent blunder. For example, maybe you fall while working and injure your arm, but hurt your leg as well. It would be argued that you are attempting to claim more than you are entitled to if you fail to mention another injury and disclose it later. They could claim this as worker’s compensation fraud and you are left defending yourself.
It’s also crucial to disclose any other symptoms you’re having that are connected to the work accident, such as pain. Other symptoms may be the loss of your motor functions or your vision is blurred. If you suffered a head injury, these types of symptoms may also arise.
After going through your recovery, you could be completely healed from your injury or worse than before. So, reporting any and all injuries can help bolster your case.