Legal Guide

Workplace Wipeouts: 6 Crucial Steps to Take After a Job-Related Injury

No one expects a day on the job to take a turn for the worse, yet workplace accidents happen every day. In the US alone, over 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries were reported during 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Many of these are minor bumps and bruises but others can be life-altering, resulting in lasting physical pain, emotional distress, and mountains of medical bills. 

While we all hope for a 9-to-5 free of mishaps, even the most careful and thoughtful employees can find themselves injured on the job. In the immediate aftermath, shock and confusion can make it hard to know what to do, so we’ve laid out the 5 most important steps you need to take after a workplace injury. Knowing what to do when the unexpected occurs can make a world of difference in protecting your well-being and rights.

  • Seek Medical Attention: It might seem obvious, but adrenaline is a powerful pain reliever, and you might not realize how hurt you actually are. Even a small injury that seems minor can become a deeper issue as time goes on. Even if you feel "fine," getting checked by a medical professional is priority number one. Not only will they document your injuries, but they'll ensure you receive the proper treatment. Early intervention can kickstart your recovery and possibly prevent long-term complications. Plus, medical records are crucial evidence if you need to file a claim later.
  • Report the Incident: Informing your supervisor or manager about the accident is crucial. Your workplace likely has specific procedures in place for reporting injuries, so it’s important to follow their guidelines. Plus most states have laws mandating that you report workplace injuries within a specific timeframe so don’t wait to take this step. The sooner you report, the better. And though the accident may seem minor, don't downplay what happened. It’s important to complete any paperwork accurately and honestly, and keep copies for your records. This official documentation serves as vital evidence for potential workers' compensation claims or legal proceedings in the future.
  • Connect with Witnesses: Accidents rarely happen in a vacuum. If possible, gather witness statements  and contact information from colleagues who saw what happened. Their firsthand accounts can be invaluable in corroborating your story and establishing the cause of the injury. Take note of any safety hazards they noticed at the time of your injury. These details could be crucial in preventing future incidents on the jobsite but they also strengthen your claim should you choose to make one. 
  • Document the Scene: Memories fade, but paper (and pictures) don't. While your mind is still fresh, write down everything you can recall about the accident. If it’s safe to do so, try to preserve the scene and take photos or videos of the area, damaged equipment, or anything else that might be relevant. This visual evidence can be incredibly helpful in reconstructing the events and pinpointing the cause of the injury. 
  • Stay Quiet on Social: In today's digital age, the urge to share your experience on social media might be strong. However, resist the temptation! Insurance companies and opposing parties may use anything you post against you, potentially jeopardizing your claim. Keep your social media updates injury-free until your case is resolved.
  • Consult an Attorney: Workers compensation laws vary from state to state but most provide some benefits for medical expenses, lost wages, and even disability in severe cases. However, it may not address everything, especially pain and suffering or long-term disability. Consulting a personal injury attorney who specializes in workplace injuries can help you understand your legal options and determine if you have a case for additional compensation. An experienced attorney can be your champion - guiding you through the complex legal maze, ensuring you receive fair treatment, and advocating for your compensation.

Workplace injuries can feel overwhelming, but you don't have to face them alone. By taking these steps, you can navigate this challenging situation with confidence. You deserve fair treatment and compensation for any work-related injury and you have people in your corner who will help you fight for the win. 

Ready to take the next step after your workplace accident? At Scott Vicknair Injury Lawyers, we know that at the heart of every case, there is a person seeking fairness. When you reach out to our law firm, your story is heard, your pain understood, and your fight becomes ours. Contact us today for your free case consultation. 

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