The Long Term Consequences Following What an Injured Worker Does After Being Injured at Work
On the job injuries have received a lot of attention from the media and are one of the most common cases heard by the courts. In Ohio companies are required to obtain worker’s compensation for one reason to ensure that the employees receive prompt and adequate medical care. However, worker’s compensation can be a double-edged sword. By providing worker’s compensation, the firm also has a means to shield themselves from the costly liability of a work-related injury lawsuit. The key to successful recovery and at the same time securing rights under the law, lies in what the injured employee does after sustaining an injury on the job.
In this article we discuss what someone should do it they are injured while performing work-related duties whether those duties are in or are not in the worker’s job description.
- Report the Injury – Immediately
Depending upon the type of injury, the worker can have 30 days and up to 2 years or longer from the date that the injury was discovered or should have been discovered to report it to their employer. And can file a claim with Ohio BWC.
However, allowing the passage of time can have several adverse consequences. Some companies have internal polices requiring that injuries sustained while at work must be reported within 24 – 48 hours and failing to do so will be considered cause subjecting the employee to be disciplined by her employer.
A more compelling reason is that failing to report the injury can result in its getting worse or becoming more difficult to treat or possibly having longer term consequences on the employees’ health. Additionally, the passage of time allows the employer to assert that the injury occurred off the job and deny their liability and the employee’s right to being treated altogether.
When reporting the injury, it’s important, if at all possible to take a reliable witness who is familiar with the events along. If the employee is part of a worker’s union, reporting the injury to the union representative is the first step.
- Get Medical Attention
Some employers have policies that employees must be seen, diagnosed and treated by providers within their network. Provided that the injury is not very serious and given the offsetting of medical expenses to the employer, this can appear attractive. Once again though, employees who believe that they have not been properly diagnosed may find that their overall health interests are better served by getting a second opinion, even if they must pay those expenses out of their own pocket, initially. Employees in Ohio have the freedom of choice of physicians.
- File a Worker’s Compensation Claim — ASAP
If applicable, claim filing must be done immediately. Filing delays can result in loss of benefits. Because the underlying claim may become more difficult to prove as a compensate injury.
- Contact an Attorney
Most attorneys do not charge for an initial consultation on worker’s compensation claims. Working with an experienced attorney, concentrating in this area of legal practice, can greatly improve the care and benefits that an injured employee and receives is entitled to.