Should I Report My Workers’ Comp Injury?
The answer is Yes. As soon as possible.
Injuries that take place in the workplace come in many forms. They can be minor and simple, such as scrapes and bruises. They can also be severe and traumatic. Sometimes they can even result in death.
Every injury is different. From the way it occurs to the effect it has on the injured individual. But the answer to whether or not you should report the injury to your employer is the same for all injuries. Yes, you should report the injury as soon as possible.
Very often, employers and workers’ comp insurers will do their best to avoid liability for any particular injury. One of their most often used defenses is that they were never aware that an injury took place. Sometimes they say this even if they were actually aware of the injury. This can make things problematic for the injured employee, as it will likely necessitate filing a workers’ comp claim at the Department of Industrial Accidents, which is a process that can take some time.
Often times, an employee may sustain what seems like a minor injury. It is their hope that they’ll rest at home, or over the weekend, and the injury will just go away. Very often, the injured employee won’t report the injury to the employer right away. Sometimes, this is fine, in that the injury will actually go away and never cause any further problems down the road. But what if the injury does come back?
In scenario’s like this, there is a latency period between when the injury occurs and when it actually becomes disabling. If the injury is not reported right away, it can make things very problematic to have to go back and put the pieces together. Having have reported the injury in the first place will likely make things much easier.
Other scenarios involve an employee who has sustained an injury, but doesn’t want to report it because they don’t want to cause problems, or rock the boat. Sometimes employees are afraid to report the injury. Other times, the try to report the injury, but the employer brushes them off, or threatens them. Sadly, these situations are quite common.
What do you do in these scenarios?
The first thing to do is to go to your doctor and seek treatment. And, be sure to be very clear with your doctor as to the nature and cause of the injury (both when and how).
The next thing to do is to contact an experience Workers’ Comp Lawyer. The specific circumstances of a particular injury are unique. An attorney experienced in workers’ compensation law will be able to properly advise you on what steps to take.
To sum up, always report a work injury.
At Troupe Law Office, we have decades of experience in representing injured workers and their families. Please visit our website for more information. Also visit our pages on Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Laws, as well as our Frequently Asked Questions pages.