If you have faced an injury at work, then hopefully it is minor. However, even if it is a minor injury, you must be prepared to take the right steps. Sometimes, injuries that may seem harmless and minor will end up becoming serious. Below are things that you absolutely should not do in the occurrence of an injury.
Leaving the Injury Unnoticed
Even if you have a minor injury, ignoring it may not be ideal. Leaving minor injuries untreated and unnoticed is the worst thing you can do for your health, and for the company productivity. Therefore, the first thing that you should do is give notice to your employer. Giving notice in the face of an injury is a legal requirement in many states.
The law states that employees must notify their employer about workplace injury within the span of 30 days. If you do not notify them, then your claim may be barred and you may not be entitled for worker’s compensation benefits.
Not Getting it Checked by a Doctor
Despite the nature or state of the injury, not providing seeking urgent medical attention is another thing that you should look out for. When you give notice about your injury to your employer, they should be quick in setting you up with a doctor. Getting treatment helps you identify the injury, mitigate probable underlying risks, and get better quickly.
Not Getting a Copy of the Panel of Physicians
When your company is setting you up with a list of physicians, make sure that you get a copy of the panel of physicians that are associated with your organization. The reason why you need to do this is to ensure you can choose which physician will treat you. Your employer will set you up with a physician that is a part of their panel of physicians.
This panel is a list of doctors that your employer decides for you when injured at work. There are certain requirements as to the type of doctors that must be on the list. For instance, the list must include at least one orthopedic doctor. You want to make sure that you get a copy of the panel physicians because you need the right to pick which doctor you want to get treatment from.
You also have the legal right to change your doctor to a different doctor on the list. Therefore, knowing your rights is essential if you get injured at work. Demanding the right doctor can help you get treated better. An injury will often lead to symptoms that will require different specialists for treatment and a simple general physician checkup may not be enough.
Not Following the Physician’s Orders
When you see the doctor, you must follow their orders. After a thorough evaluation of your injury, the doctor will give their expert opinion about the type of treatment you need. They will also give you an opinion about your work status and decide whether it is safe for you to continue your work, or if it is better that you rest and recover before you can start working again.
In certain cases, the doctor will guide you across certain restrictions that you must follow in order to work with an injury. This means that they will set conditions for you to follow when working. For example, you may have to refrain from lifting over 10 pounds. You may also be restrained from performing certain movements or bending in certain directions.
These restrictions make sure that you not worsen your injury. The doctor will also tell you about the treatment you need. For instance, you may need therapy, injections, medications, and in some instances, the doctor may also recommend surgery. Make sure that you are following the doctor’s orders so that you can recover from quickly.
Not Reporting the Injury in Writing
It is critical that you report your injury to your superiors in writing since verbally notifying them may not be enough. Writing down the incident allows you to be more specific and comprehensive about the details of your injury. Some states even require employers to notify all workplace injuries in the form of writing. Even if it is not a pre-requisite, employers should consider providing injury details in writing just to stay on the safe side.
Some states also have filing deadlines known as the statute of limitations. If you do not file your concern in writing as soon as possible, then you will lose your legal rights to receive the appropriate compensation for being injured on work site. Thus, a documented write-up can help you secure your employee benefits and get the best medical care.
You must also follow-up with the doctors, insurance agents, and advisors. This may also include keeping track of all the paperwork involved in the process. Being on top of can help you speed up the process of the claims and get all the funds you need to pay for the treatment.
Not Knowing When An Injury Becomes a Lawsuit
You have the right to sue your company during a workplace injury, considering that the injury was accidental, or a cause of a clear safety hazard. This will also require you to look into the employer’s liability insurance program and get the best compensation options.
If you have been hurt at work, following the above mentioned steps will help you get the benefits that you deserve. It will also prevent your company from exploiting you, and depriving you from your rights. Therefore, always prioritize your health if you face an injury.
Suffered an injury at work? Let Latimer at the Law Offices of James E. Latimer take charge of this issue. He is a compensation lawyer that specializes in getting the best compensations for his clients. Getting the services will also mean that you can equip your case with a team of experts that know about all ins-an-outs pertaining to California workers compensation law. Contact now and schedule a consultation, or call at 510-444-6555.