If you’re injured at work, it can be a scary and overwhelming experience. You may wonder what your legal rights are, what mistakes to avoid, and whether or not you need to hire a lawyer. This post will clarify your situation and help you understand your next steps.
WHEN DO YOU NEED A LAWYER FOR A WORKPLACE INJURY?
Wondering if you need to hire a lawyer if you’ve been injured at work? The answer depends on the severity of your injuries and the circumstances surrounding your accident.
If your injuries are minor and your employer cooperates, you may not need a lawyer. However, if your injuries are severe or your employer is being uncooperative, it’s time to consider hiring an attorney.
WHAT ARE YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS AFTER A WORKPLACE INJURY?
Every employer in Massachusetts is required to obtain worker’s compensation insurance. That way, if you’re injured at work, you’re entitled to compensation for lost wages, as well as payment of medical expenses. However, there is no payment for pain and suffering in the worker’s compensation system.
In some cases, someone other than the employer or employee is involved in the accident and may be at fault. For instance, if an employee is required to drive for their job and another driver causes an accident, the employee will have a separate civil action against them. In this case, the employee can also recover pain and suffering damages from the other driver.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO AFTER A WORKPLACE INJURY?
If you’ve been injured at work, it’s vital to seek medical attention as soon as possible and notify your employer of the accident. If your employer is uncooperative or if your injuries are severe, contact a lawyer to discuss your legal options.
3 WORKPLACE INJURY LEGAL MISTAKES YOU DON’T WANT TO MAKE
A workplace injury can quickly become frustrating with all the doctor visits and paperwork (let alone any pain you’re feeling).
To make matters worse, the legal system can be both confusing and intimidating. If you’re not careful, you could easily make a mistake that jeopardizes your ability to get the compensation you deserve. That’s why it’s essential to be aware of the following three legal errors that injured workers often make.
Mistake #1: Not Seeking Medical Treatment Right Away If you’re injured at work, it’s important to seek medical treatment right away — even if you don’t think the injury is serious. In many cases, what seems like a minor injury can be much more severe than it initially appears.
By getting checked out by a doctor, you can get a professional opinion about the extent of your injuries and start receiving the treatment you need to recover as quickly as possible.
In addition, seeking medical treatment right after an injury occurs will help create a paper trail that documents the extent of your injuries and the cause. This documentation will be critical if you file a workers’ compensation claim or personal injury lawsuit.
Mistake #2: Assuming Your Employer Will Take Care of Everything
Just because you were injured at work doesn’t mean your employer will automatically take care of everything.
Some employers may try to downplay the seriousness of your injuries or deny that they occurred at work to avoid paying workers’ compensation benefits. That’s why it’s essential to know your rights and understand what coverage your employer provides.
Mistake #3: Failing to Consult With an Attorney
If you’ve been injured at work, it’s always a good idea to consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney before taking legal action.
An experienced attorney can help investigate your accident’s circumstances, gather evidence to support your claim, and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. And if necessary, an attorney can also represent you in court if your case goes to trial.
No one ever expects to get injured at work, but accidents happen all the time. If you find yourself in this situation, you must avoid making legal mistakes that could jeopardize your ability to get the compensation you need and deserve.
Remember: seek medical treatment immediately, don’t assume your employer will take care of everything, and consult with an attorney before taking any legal action. By following these simple tips, you’ll be in a much better position to protect your legal rights and get the outcome you want from your workers’ compensation or personal injury case.
If you’ve been injured in your Massachusetts workplace, get a free consultation from the law experts at Jenkins-Bryant & Surrette PC today.