Industrial Accidents and Injuries: 5 Mistakes to Avoid when Filing a Claim

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If you are a worker employed in the private sector, state and local government or federal government then you come under the purview of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). OSHA ensures the safety and healthful working conditions for workers. In the event you are injured at the workplace, OSHA’s worker’s compensation helps both employers and employees to protect their individual rights.

When you are injured, you and your employer need to follow procedures set down by OSHA to set in motion the process of claiming compensation for your injury. Often, because of the emotional upheaval you may make mistakes while filing a claim. Here are 5 mistakes to avoid when making a claim.

1. Non-reporting

The most fundamental mistake to avoid is non-reporting. According to OSHA, when you are involved in an accident at the workplace causing you to be injured you have to report the accident to your immediate supervisor who will then follow your organization’s SOPs to provide you medical assistance and also report to OSHA within 8 hours if a fatality is involved and within 24 hours if injuries and hospitalization are involved.

Do not make the mistake of non-reporting. Report the incident with associated consequences such as fatalities or non-fatal injuries to your employer promptly in writing.       

2. Don’t blame yourself

Typically, your employer’s insurance would handle a compensation claim. It obviously looks at the interest of your employer and sees that it pays the minimum compensation possible. You can simply state that an accident has taken place and you are injured and you need medical help and/or hospitalization. 

Do not ascribe blame to yourself for the accident. If you do so, then you run the risk of not receiving any compensation at all.

3. Don’t use your private health insurance

It is typical of employers to suggest that you could claim benefits under your private health insurance. Remember, your private insurance does not cover disability benefits, medical expense reimbursements, and other benefits available under worker’s compensation. Your employer is equally if not more responsible for the accident that happened at the workplace. Secondly, when you report the incident to your supervisor, your employer is bound by law to report to OSHA after which your compensation claim process is set in motion.

Avoid the mistake of using your private health insurance for injuries sustained at the workplace.   

4. Don’t hide medical history

Your medical condition has to be recorded honestly. Don’t be selective about your medical history. Be fully transparent and submit the required information truthfully. It is not for you to determine the seriousness of your injuries. Your part of reporting is to describe your symptoms fully and completely. 

Therefore, don’t be economical with the truth about your medical history and injuries.  

5. Avoid being your own attorney

Often, it is tempting to be your own attorney to save paying attorney’s fees or commission. This short-sighted approach could result in lower compensation simply because you would not be able to find the time to fight your claim and more importantly to present your case supported by technical and legal points. Therefore, it is better to engage with a trusted industrial accident lawyer Baton Rouge to fight your case. In all probability, your lawyer would be able to secure a higher net compensation.

Don’t be your own attorney.  

Your injury at the workplace is due to an accident that happened there. There could be many reasons why the accident took place. In order to protect your safety employers are required to ensure a safe working environment free of known safety and health hazards. Despite these safety measures you are injured in an accident. You are due to collect fair compensation for your injuries. In order to ensure you receive your due compensation you must avoid making mistakes as described above.    

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