We recently talked about what you should do if you find yourself injured at work. In the minutes and hours that follow your injury, there are a number of things you must make sure get accomplished. These include documenting the accident and speaking with a qualified legal representative. It’s good to prepare to do these things before you ever get injured, in fact. Being prepared can make terrible situations like these go much more smoothly.
But there is another bit of knowledge that will be helpful if you ever find yourself injured on the job. There are certain pieces of legislation that guarantee your rights, should you ever be hurt while working for an employer. If you know your rights, you’ll be a lot more certain of getting beneficial resolutions to your workplace injury claim. We’ll briefly cover a couple of these specific rights in the following. It’s important to note that there is a lot of diversity from state to state when it comes to workplace injury laws. The following are nationwide characteristics that you can generally rely upon wherever you happen to be injured at work, despite the specific laws found in your state.
- You always have a right to leave work to see a doctor for treatment of your injury.
- You have the right to put forward a formal claim about your illness or injury. Your case will be seen in a workers’ compensation court or an industrial court run by the state.
- If you go to the hospital after an injury and are released, you have the right to go back to work. You can’t be sent home.
- If you are so badly hurt or ill that you can’t go to work, regardless of the duration, you have the right to disability compensation of some kind. This will vary a lot state to state, but there will always be some kind of compensation available to you.
- You can appeal an employer’s decision regarding your worker’s compensation claim. You can also appeal the ruling of the compensation court.
- You have a right to legal counsel and representation throughout every step of the injury claim, compensation, and appeal process.
There are some states that are more generous towards injured claimants than others. It’s important for you to understand the general political climate of your state with regard to workers comp claims. This is especially true if you have a risky job, one where you come in contact with sick people, or if you perform any kind of manual labor. It is useful for every American worker to be equipped with this information.
It is also helpful to know to whom these rules do not necessarily apply. If you are self employed or are marginally employed through various non-traditional means, you won’t be able to hang your hat on any of these rights. If you are likely to be injured at your work in a role such as this, it is worth your while to consult with an injury lawyer ahead of time to understand your specific rights in the event of an injury.
We hope this helps, and that you will enjoy many injury-free years at work!