Workers injured on the job are usually entitled to Workers’ Compensation. Following the correct procedures after the work accident is critical for preserving rights. Always file an accident report and do so as quickly as possible. File a report even if you do not think your injuries were serious. Always file a written accident report, and do not depend on verbal communication with a supervisor. The effects of certain injuries may not immediately appear and having a record of the accident is crucial. Otherwise, the Workers’ Compensation insurer may allege the injury did not result from employment.
Seek Medical Attention
Anyone injured while at work should seek immediate medical attention. For serious injuries, that means a visit to the emergency room. If injuries are less serious, consult with an employer as to whether there are particular doctors you must visit or if you can choose your own doctor. Following the orders of the health care provider is also critical.
Workers’ Compensation Claim
It is the employer, not the employee, who is responsible for filing a Workers’ Compensation claim with the state. If a worker reports an injury at the time of the accident, that should notify the employer to file the claim. However, if the worker simply made a record of the accident and did not find out until later that they were indeed injured, it is up to the worker to inform the employer of the injury so that a claim is filed. It is wise to follow up and ensure a Workers’ Compensation claim is filed. Injured workers have the right to a copy of the claim.
Drug or Alcohol Use
If the accident occurred while the worker was under the effects of drugs or alcohol, Workers’ Compensation insurance will not provide benefits. After a workplace accident, an employer may request that the injured person submit to an alcohol or drug test.
The specifics of Workers’ Compensation laws vary by state. In most states, workers’ rights include:
- The right to file a Workers’ Compensation claim
- The right to seek medical treatment
- The right to return to the job after a doctor’s release
- The right to legal representation
- Disability compensation if unable to work, either temporarily or permanently
In addition, if the injured worker disagrees with a determination of the Workers’ Compensation court or insurance company, they have the right to appeal the decision.
Right to Refuse
Workers’ rights after an injury include the right to refuse certain requests from the employer. For example, Workers’ Compensation insurance paid by the employer covers injury-related medical expenses. If an employer asks a worker to pay for treatment on their own health insurance policy, the worker has the right to say no.
It is illegal for an employer to offer any type of incentive to a worker to avoid filing a Workers’ Compensation claim. By law, employers cannot harass workers about filing Workers’ Compensation claims, or make threats regarding reprisals if the claim is filed.
Wilmington Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC Protect the Rights of Injured Workers
If you were injured while on the job, you need the services of the experienced Wilmington Workers’ Compensation lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC. Call us today at 302-888-1221 or complete our online contact form to arrange a free consultation. Located in Wilmington, Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state, including Dover, Newark, and Middletown.