Suffering injury on the job is a common occurrence today, but not everyone truly understands the options at their disposal when that does occur. Filing a a workers compensation claim is really just one avenue of recovery for those who have been injured while working. While it’s an important one, employees also have other legal avenues to consider when looking to recover compensation for injuries, lost wages and other damages resulting from their injury.
By law employers must supply a reasonably safe work environment for people under their employ. Not every employer, however, meets that responsibility and when injury results, workers compensation is there to provide support. Yet workers compensation is limited in the scope of damages you’re able to recover. In some cases, however, the employer can be found liable for personal injury damages under the theory of neglect. In others, manufacturers, their agents and others responsible a role in the chain of distribution can be held liable when products utilized in the workplace that cause injury are found to be defective or without proper hazard warning when inherently dangerous.
Steps to Take When Suffering Injury On the Job:
It goes without saying that when you’re injured on the job or in any other circumstance, it’s vital that you seek immediate medical evaluation and treatment. Never refuse treatment if injured in an accident irrespective of the circumstances. However, when injured on the job, it’s also important that you report your injuries to your employer as soon as possible. It’s important that little time is allowed to elapse in the aftermath of an on-the-job injury when seeking a workers compensation claim.
Once you report your injuries to your employer, it’s important that you file a formal workers compensation claim with your local workers comp court and your employer’s insurer. Once you file your claim, you begin to receive some automatic protections.
Know Your Rights When Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim:
Filing a workers comp claim does not automatically mean you’ll receive an award. But it does ensure you receive some important rights in pursuing your claim: They include the following:
- the right to see a doctor and seek medical treatment
- the right to return to work if released by your doctor
- the right to some level of disability compensation should your injury or illness prevent you from returning to work (whether permanently or temporarily)
- the right to appeal a decision by the worker’s compensation court if you don’t agree with it
- the right to be represented by an attorney during the claims process
Additionally, you have the right to refuse requests or offers after suffering injury on the job, like an offer to seek medical treatment via the employer’s health insurance; or some sort of incentive to avoid filing a workers compensation claim.
Importantly, you have the right to file a workers comp claim without any threat of harassment or reprisal by your employer. There are harsh punishments in place for employers who return workers compensation claims with such unscrupulous treatment.
In addition to filing a workers comp claim when injured on the job, you may be eligible for personal injury damages. If you have questions about filing a personal injury claim resulting from an injury on-the-job, call the attorneys of Bizzieri Law Offices in Chicago. We offer experience and a strong track-record of success in these kinds of claims. The initial consultation is free and we never collect a fee in your case unless we recover damages for you. Call us today at 773.881.9000.