When heading to work you expect to be in a safe and secure environment. It’s a place where you should be taken care of and the correct health and safety standards adhered to. If you end up experiencing an accident in the workplace, it can be distressing. Not only might you experience physical pain, but it can also be overwhelming and leave you wondering what the next steps are. It’s important to handle the situation carefully and properly to protect your well-being, safety, legal rights and employment. Here we have put together some advice for if you have been in a workplace accident.
What is a Workplace Accident?
A workplace accident tends to be characterized as an unplanned event that occurs while you are doing your job and causes you injury or harm. It could be in an office, a construction site, in a retail establishment or in a restaurant. A workplace accident can be anything from cuts and bruises to burns, bone breakages and even death.
Do’s & Don’ts If You’ve Been in a Workplace Accident
DO: Seek medical attention
Your health and safety needs to come above anything else. After you notify your employer of the accident, the next step is getting to the doctor, even if your injury might seem minor. Be sure to make your healthcare provider aware the injury occurred while you were at work.
DON’T: Avoid telling your work what happened
If you become injured at work, you need to tell your supervisor or manager as soon as possible. Not only is this important for any legal claim you might make, but it also means anything unsafe can be rectified to avoid the same thing happening to someone else. Ensure when reporting the accident you detail what happened, the time and location and be sure to include any evidence too. Virginia requires you to report your work injury to your employer within 30 days of your accident.
DO: File a compensation claim
If you become injured at work it can take its toll on your physical and mental health and also render you unable to work and live your life as you usually do. Compensation is a fair claim that can help to make up for the monetary costs you’ve lost from being off work as well as compensate for the pain you’ve experienced and any treatment you need.
DON’T: Delay putting your compensation claim in
When experiencing an injury at work you want to submit a claim as soon as possible. Not only will the details be fresh in your mind but it shows the legitimacy and you can keep your legal team updated on your recovery progress. An experienced attorney will be assigned to your case and they can help guide you through the process and get the compensation you need and deserve.
DO: Avoid talking about your incident online
When you have started legal proceedings to claim compensation for your injury, avoid putting anything online. Social media could affect your worker’s compensation case. If you start discussing details of your incident on social media or forums, or slandering your employment, this could be used against you in the case and could impact how much you get or even if you get compensated. Insurance companies also look for online information about vacations or other fun things you’ve done after your accident to argue you weren’t really injured to the extent you allege. To avoid this issue, it’s best to keep quiet and avoid posting anything to social media.
DON’T: Return to work before you’re ready
While you might want to return to work as soon as possible, this isn’t a good idea. Returning to work when your injury is still bad can cause you more injury and hardship in the long run. It’s better to wait until you’ve healed enough to get your job done properly rather than going too soon and making it worse. Your doctor should provide you work notes to let you and your employer know when you are ready to return to work.
DO: Speak to your employer about your return
Whether your doctor has taken out of work for a long time or just a couple of days, it’s important to speak to your employer when you return. Make sure your job is adapted if it needs to be, for example, if you’ve broken your arm and can’t do certain duties, they find you something else to do. It’s good to clear the air too, but don’t talk about the facts of your case, just your ability to come back to work.
Contact A Dedicated Worker’s Compensation Lawyer in Richmond, VA
If you have been injured in a workplace accident and need help with your case, Renfro & Renfro can help. Our experienced workers’ compensation attorneys are here to assist. We understand the process can be complex and intimidating, so call us today at (804) 601-4433 or contact us online for a free consultation. Let our team guide you through your claim and help you receive the compensation you deserve.