Workplace Accidents: Know Your Rights

On September 27, 2011, in Law Information, by admin

workplace accidentsIf you’re considered an employee under the South Carolina Worker’s Compensation Act, you’re likely covered under workers’ compensation insurance, also known as workman’s compensation, which pays for medical care and rehabilitation after a workplace accident. Worker’s comp may also pay for disability resulting from an accident, as well as lost wages.

Problems arise when insurance companies minimize the severity of your injury or disability to pay you as little accident compensation as possible. Know your rights and responsibilities if you have a workplace accident.

Report your accident immediately.

Talk to your supervisor and follow any procedures your employer has regarding accident reporting. Do whatever you can to report it in writing, if your employer does not require it. This could be in the form of an email or letter, and be sure to keep a copy with proof of delivery.

Know where to go for treatment.

When you have a workplace accident with injury, you are usually required to visit the employer’s designated medical provider. Be sure you know who that provider is.

Consider consulting a workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible.

Your employer’s insurance company will use any means necessary to pay as little as possible, including hiring attorneys and adjusters. You’ll be at a significant disadvantage unless you hire your own workplace accident lawyer to fight for your rights. You do have a right to request a hearing if you are not satisfied with the accident compensation you receive, and having a lawyer present will increase your chances of winning the case.

Determine whether any third parties are involved.

Your workers’ comp attorney will ask you about any third parties that may have been involved in your accident, such as contractors or equipment manufacturers. Be as detailed as possible when describing the accident to your lawyer.

Know what happens to your income if you go back to work part time or must stay home.

After you’ve been treated, your next concern is your income. If you cannot work, you may be entitled to receive wage compensation while you are off work, no matter who was at fault in your accident. Often, you will be offered less than you deserve, so be sure to check with a worker’s compensation lawyer before accepting any offer from your employer or its insurance company.

Make sure your dependents are familiar with how workers’ compensation works.

In the event you are incapacitated or killed in a workplace accident, your dependents need to know their rights so they receive fair accident compensation. Share this blog post with them so they know what to do, just in case.

If you have been involved in an accident at work, you need a workplace accident attorney who will fight for your rights. Your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance company will do everything in its power to pay you less than you deserve, so level the field with your own representation.

For more information on steps to take after experiencing a workplace accident, click here.

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