If you are not able to work as a result of an injury or illness that occurred at work in Topanga, you might be eligible for workers' compensation benefits. When a workplace injury occurs, you may find yourself losing out on paychecks, accumulating medical bills, and being overwhelmed with paperwork. This can be a very stressful and uncertain time.
Thankfully, California law protects workers from negative fallout related to work injuries by requiring employers to carry workers compensation insurance.
What is Workers Compensation and How Does It Work?
Workers' compensation is a form of insurance that is purchased by an employer to protect their workers from job-related injuries and illness. It provides a safeguard for injured employees so that they are not left with no job and no money while trying to recuperate from an injury. Some jobs can be hazardous, and it should not be the responsibility of the employee to deal with all the repercussions that come with an injury.
Under the California Workers' Compensation Act, individuals that are injured on the job can receive various types of financial support to cover their injury-related expenses. This includes:
Unlike a personal injury claim, workers can qualify for benefits despite being at fault for a job-related accident. However, injured employees can not recover compensation for damages typically granted in a personal injury case.
Common Causes of Workplace Injuries
The top three leading causes of work-related injuries account for more than 84% of all nonfatal injuries on the job. This includes:
Overexertion and Repetitive Motion Injuries
Overexertion injuries can occur when a worker uses excessive physical effort to do a task and becomes hurt. This includes lifting, pushing, turning, holding, carrying, or throwing.
Repetitive motion caused by stress or strain on some part of the body is due to the repetitive nature of the job. Common repetitive tasks include lifting boxes, typing on a computer, using a ten-key machine, sitting for long hours, and working on a production line.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Slip and fall accidents are one of the most frequent on-the-job injuries. They account for 25% of yearly injury claims, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Falls on the job involve falling from slippery floors, from tripping, and from heights like ladders, roofs, scaffolding, or various other structures.
Injuries from Contact with Equipment and Objects
Contact with equipment and objects refers to injuries that occur when a worker is struck by something or bumps into something. This can include an employee being hit by a moving object, running into or being pushed in front of an object, being crushed in equipment, or being caught in cable or rope. It may also include incidents like a worker being struck or crushed by collapsing structures, equipment, or materials.
Workers' Comp Can Also Cover Occupational Illnesses
In addition to being injured, employees can also get sick with an illness because of their job. When this occurs, workers compensation insurance is designed to help cover some of the expenses.
Job-related illnesses include diseases that develop from dangerous work environments or workplace exposures. Some common illnesses that occur at work include:
Situations involving job-related illness are complex for a few different factors. One of the main reasons is that you will need to prove that your illness was caused by your job, and not from any other factor like genetics or something that happened during your personal time. This is further complicated by the fact that many illnesses develop over time, which makes them more difficult to notice and to pinpoint the origin.
What Should I Do If I Am Injured at Work?
If you get injured in the course of your employment, you need to always report the incident, injury, or condition as soon as possible to your employer. This is essential even if an injury appears minor. This, because injuries that seem minor at first can become much more serious in the coming days or weeks.
For instance, an injury that might seem like only a strained muscle can end up being a sign of permanent nerve damage. Or a sore low back from lifting a heavy object could be a disc herniation that requires surgery.
Further, you should always have a job-related injury assessed by a doctor. This is the only way to find out the extent of your injury, and what can be done to recuperate. This is especially important for stress or repetitive motion injuries. Here, making changes in the ergonomic environment might not only treat the injury, but help to prevent injuries to others. Further, to protect the long-term ability of a worker to maintain and continue in their job.
Finally, waiting too long to report an injury on the job might foreclose your right to claim any kind of workers' compensation benefits.
Should You Consult With a Topanga Workers' Compensation Lawyer?
Consequently, if sustain an on-the-job injury in Topanga, contact the Topanga personal injury attorneys at Drake Law Firm. Don't go through these difficult times alone. We are here to assist you with your case. We know the causes and effects of work accidents and injuries. Additionally, we know the laws and regulations associated with workers' compensation in California and will work to make the most of the compensation you receive.
Contact Drake Law Firm so I can answer any questions you may have and let you know what I can do to help. If you’re unable to visit our firm, we can come to your home or hospital room.