The workplace should be safe and free from hazards. It means that business owners should prioritize the safety of their employees to avoid injuries and accidents. This is why there are government agencies like the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSH) that regulates workplaces and enforces safety standards.
However, despite the efforts made by employers, accidents may still happen, and employees could get injured on the job. Some of the most common work-related incidents include slips and falls, cuts, strains, and collisions. Aside from that, workplace hazards like exposure to harmful substances, radiation, and electricity may cause health issues among employees.
With this in mind, if an employee like you experiences an injury in the workplace, you must act immediately. And to help you navigate your case and receive the compensation you deserve, getting legal support from workplace injury attorneys can be helpful.
Furthermore, this post outlines a four-step process you can follow when dealing with a workplace injury:
- Seek Medical Attention Right Away
Before anything else, you should be able to attend to your wounds first to avoid complications like infections or causing your injuries to worsen. Instead of waiting until the next day after the incident, you must seek medical assistance immediately. You can ask your colleagues for assistance, so they can contact the workplace nurses and help you get first aid.
More importantly, if you still need further medical care, you may have to be rushed to the hospital for proper treatment. For instance, if you sustain serious injuries like a fractured bone or severe bleeding from your wound, getting adequate treatment can help reduce pain and inflammation in the affected area or possible blood loss.
Once you have received the necessary medical care and are recovering, you can explore filing a personal injury lawsuit. When considering a personal injury lawsuit, follow these essential steps. Consult a specialized attorney to guide you and assess your case’s strength.
- Report The Injury To Your Employer
After seeking medical attention for your workplace injury and ensuring your well-being, you must immediately report the incident to your employer. This step is essential as it helps verify that the incident happened at work while performing your duty and was not due to a preexisting condition.
Depending on where you are, different states have varying laws on when to report workplace accidents. But as a good start, advise your supervisor right away. Aside from a verbal report, ensure to file written documentation of what happened.
When you report the accident, you’ll be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, such as permanent partial disability (PPD), temporary partial disability (TPD), or temporary total disability (TTD). However, you need an attorney to guide you to ensure your disability is correctly classified. Working with a legal professional can help ensure that the eventual settlement is fair and just.
In addition to helping ensure you get compensated, reporting the incident gives your employer time to investigate what happened and take steps to lessen workplace hazards in the future.
- Collect Evidence
After communicating the incident with your employer, you need to record everything that can help support your case. For example, take note of any witnesses who were present during the accident and what they observed. You can use this as evidence that the accident was not your fault and its cause was due to a workplace hazard and insufficient safety measures.
If possible, take pictures of any physical damage to the equipment involved in the accident. Or, ask for a copy of a video from the surveillance camera in the room. This can prove that your injury was caused by an accident or mishap at work in case your employer’s attorney twists the story.
Another form of evidence you can prepare is photos of the injuries you’ve sustained. This can help back up your medical reports and prove your case.
Take close-up shots that highlight the details of your injuries, such as cuts, bruises, lacerations, or abrasions, ensuring good lighting for clarity. Document the progression of your injuries with before and after photos, illustrating how they evolved over time. If your injuries result in scarring or disfigurement, photograph these areas to demonstrate the long-term impact.
- Take Action Against Your Employer
Suppose you believe your employer has been negligent, failed to provide a safe work environment, or violated workplace safety rules. In that case, you may have grounds for filing a personal injury lawsuit against them.
For instance, you may have lost your legs during the incident, which means that you won’t be eligible to work anymore and will need to be supported financially by others daily. The money you receive from these lawsuits can help cover your medical costs and other expenses of losing a limb or other body parts.
However, to ensure the success of your case, seeking legal assistance representing your interests in court is best. They can help you navigate legal proceedings and ensure that all necessary evidence is presented to serve justice in your favor.
Selecting the right workplace injury lawyer is a crucial decision that impacts the outcome of your case. To make an informed choice, consider several key factors. Prioritize lawyers specializing in personal injury law, particularly those experienced in handling workplace injury cases. Investigate their reputation and track record, gathering insights from online reviews and referrals.
During an initial consultation, assess their clear communication and approach to your case. Clarify the lawyer’s fees and payment structure, with many personal injury lawyers operating on a contingency fee basis. Consider their location, as local familiarity can be an asset, and request client references to understand their performance and client satisfaction. Lastly, trust your instincts and feel confident in your attorney’s abilities to represent your best interests.
Ultimately, employers could be held liable for work-related accidents. And as an employee who recently got injured while on the job, you’re entitled to compensation. However, you must take the necessary steps to get the compensation you deserve.
As a good start, immediately get medical assistance and report the incident to your employer. And to help increase your chances of winning your case and receiving fair compensation, consult a legal professional who can support and guide you as you file a workplace injury claim.