A lot of our clients who have suffered a workplace injury through an accident have no idea how they’re supposed to proceed after the fact. Unless you’ve been through this before, or work in Human Resources, you probably have no idea how this works. Of course, your employer probably mentioned something about their workplace injury policy when you were in training. Unfortunately, very few of our clients recall exactly what their company’s policy is. The bottom line is that most people never imagine they’ll get hurt at work. When it happens, they aren’t sure what to do. Thankfully, workers compensation attorneys in Columbus know exactly what to do. The best thing you can do is call and schedule your free, initial consultation. Sit down with one of our attorneys who can help explain the workers comp process to you.
Here, we intend to explain the steps you should take after your workplace injury. We also want to discuss the reasons why you should talk to a Columbus injury lawyer as soon as possible after your accident. We don’t want you to jeopardize your chances of collecting benefits. Nor do we want the insurance company to try to take advantage of you. The best way to make that happen is to retain our services at the outset.
You Must Report Your Workplace Injury
It doesn’t matter how minor your workplace injury is. You have to report it no matter what. Typically, injured employees report their accident to their manager or supervisor. However, if they aren’t available, you can go directly to Human Resources. It’s crucial that you report your injuries immediately. You’re required to do so per Ohio workers compensation law. You also don’t want to violate your employer’s workplace accident policy.
If your manager isn’t available, report your injuries to the next person in charge. You’ll need to fill out an incident or accident form before you go out for treatment. If you wait too long to do this, the company may claim your accident never took place.
Your Columbus Injury Lawyers Need the Incident Report to Prove Your Claim
What you may not realize is that your attorney is going to need a copy of your incident or accident report. In order for them to prove you were hurt on company time, you’ll need to submit some sort of documentation. What better way to do this than to submit a copy of a report signed by your manager?
Your lawyer will also rely on this report to see what happened. The report may also have contact information for witnesses on there. If a coworker or supervisor saw the accident take place, they can help in court. Even if all they do is sign an affidavit that the statement is true to their knowledge, this will help. However, if you fail to report your workplace accident, they won’t be able to do this.
You Must Go for Treatment Immediately No Matter How Minor Your Injuries
It can be hard to tell a grown adult that they have to go to the hospital. If your HR representative instructs you to go to the hospital, you may refuse. Or you tell them you’d rather go see your own doctor. The thing is, if you don’t go out for treatment immediately, your Columbus injury lawyers will have a difficult time proving how badly you were hurt.
The other thing you need to remember is that, in order to receive workers compensation benefits, you must be treated by a state-approved doctor. If you go to see your own primary care physician, your medical care will not be covered.
You Are Going to Have to Take a Drug Test
It may seem insulting when your employer asks you to submit to a drug test when you tell them you got hurt. However, almost all employers do this today. They want to make sure they don’t pay out on a worker’s comp claim that was caused by drugs or alcohol.
If you refuse the test, don’t expect your claim to be approved. The state worker’s compensation commission is not going to sympathize with you for refusing the test. And, if you take the test and it comes back positive, there is no way your claim will be paid. In situations like this, there isn’t much your lawyer can do to help.
When your workers compensation attorney in Columbus asks if you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of your accident, tell the truth. They will find out if you’re fibbing when they look at the file. If they learn that you weren’t upfront and honest with them, they aren’t going to be comfortable representing you.
Make Sure You Comply with Your Medical Treatment
One of the problems some of our clients run into are missed doctor’s appointments. We understand that you’re only human. Things come up and you may need to reschedule appointments from time to time. However, this is a lot different from just not showing up for doctor’s appointments. The same is true for physical therapy appointments. You can’t expect to continue to receive workers compensation benefits if you aren’t participating in your own treatment.
Call an Experienced Workers Compensation Attorney in Columbus Right Away
If you get hurt at work, there’s a good chance you’ll be eligible for workers compensation benefits. However, you need to make sure you take certain steps after the accident takes place. If you follow the guidelines here, you should have no trouble getting your claim approved. Of course, if your claim is denied for some reason, just call and talk to one of our workers compensation attorneys in Columbus. We can sit down and go over your case and find out where you went wrong.
Since your initial consultation is free, you don’t have anything to lose.