Deflecting The Blame: Common Ways You Could Get Blamed During A Worker's Comp Claim
It does not matter if you have been employed at a place of business for only a few months or you have more seniority than everyone in the building. In the event of an on-the-job injury, there is a good chance you will see an entirely new face to the employer that you have. A worker's compensation claim can change everything you think you know about the company you work for and their ethical practices.
It is true that worker's compensation is set into place to protect employees when they are injured on the job. However, employers never want to come up with any more money than they have to and that can mean going to great lengths to take the liability of an injury off of their own shoulders. Here are a few ways you could get the blame for getting hurt while at work.
You were not following safety guidelines and practices in place when you got hurt.
It is imperative to always follow safety practices on the job, not only for your own safety, but just in case you ever get injured. Your employer will take advantage of the situation if you were doing anything against the rules when injured, such as horseplay or blatant disregard of a safety rule. You may still be entitled to benefits, but it will be less likely that you get as much compensation if you were the root cause of the problem.
You were not technically on the clock when injured.
Once you hit the time clock, it is never a good idea to hang around in your workplace, but to head on out the door. This is because if you are injured after you have already punched out, the employer could claim that you were in the building by your own accord, and therefore, they cannot be liable for your injuries.
Your injury is a result of an issue you already had.
When asked about previous injuries and illnesses on an employment application, this is a form of protection for the employer. For example, if you had knee surgery the year before and later injure the same knee on the premises at work, your employer may claim that this injury is not their liability. For this reason, it is imperative to report injuries immediately and see both a medical professional and a worker's compensation attorney right away.
When your employer starts trying to deflect the blame back to you, it can feel like you never knew your employer at all. For this reason, it is always a good idea to consult an attorney about your injury from the start.