Many workers who are injured at work have no idea of the process and procedures that need to occur after their incident. Not all, but many companies choose to keep this information vague and limited because it always works in the company’s favor when workers miss steps in the process. It is important to remember that when you are injured at work that you have a responsibility to inform your employer immediately, but you also have legal rights that are in place for your welfare and protection.
Know your rights
If you are hurt on the job, it does not matter if it is something as minor as a superficial cut, or whether it is a traumatic injury like cutting yourself on a saw, there are several basic things you should do. If you do not follow any of the guidelines mentioned below, you may lose your rights and benefits under Carolina workers’ compensation law. Keep this information close at hand so that in the event that you are ever injured at work, you will be reasonably secure that your rights are protected:
Report the injury – Be sure to report almost any incident that causes pain or discomfort because of on the job activity. This includes cumulative injuries such as soreness in muscles or joints that endure repetitive use or loss of hearing if you are exposed to loud machinery or noises. Report the injury to your supervisor and/or the employee health nurse. Make it clear that your injury was caused by work or working conditions. You need to make the report as soon as possible after your injury or your notice in the physical change.
Get a copy of the accident report and keep it in a safe place – If your supervisor does not prepare or fill out an incident report, then you need to write a letter stating the facts surrounding your injury and give a copy of the letter to your supervisor. Be sure the letter is dated and time stamped as a record of when you submitted the letter to your supervisor. It is not necessary, but it would be a great idea to send the letter by registered mail so that someone from the company will sign a receipt for having received it.
Keep notes of all contact you have with anyone about your injury – This includes but is not limited to supervisors, insurance company representatives, doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals. Many companies are “self insured” for workman’s compensation and may send you to a industrial health clinic or doctor. Be sure to make the appointments and follow the instructions given by the doctor. Tell the company doctors in great detail how your work caused your injury. If you do not feel that the company doctor is caring for you properly, give him or her, a written statement of how your work caused your injury and keep a copy of that statement. Do not get frustrated if you are denied your claim. Keep demanding proper care through the company doctor. At this point is it advisable that you consult with a workman’s compensation attorney to determine your legal rights.
Consult a workmans comp lawyer in Charlotte, NC
Residents of North Carolina have been served by the Olive Law Firm as workers’ comp attorneys for decades. They have helped honest, hardworking people get the compensation and the treatment that they deserve after a work related injury. No matter what kind of work related injury you are dealing with, you need to know your rights. The Olive Law Firm has been helping Carolinians understand their rights and seek justice since 1957. Call their office and ask for a consultation with a worker’s compensation attorney.