If you are unable to work as a result of an injury or illness that happened on the job in Van Nuys, you may be qualified for workers' compensation benefits. When a workplace injury happens, you might find yourself missing out on paychecks, accumulating medical bills, and being overwhelmed with paperwork. This can be a very difficult 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 type of insurance that is purchased by a company to protect their employees from job-related injuries and illness. It offers a safety net for injured employees so that they are not left with no job and no money while trying to recover from an injury. Some jobs can be hazardous, and it should not be the responsibility of the employee to deal with all the consequences that come with an injury.
Under the California Workers' Compensation Act, people who are hurt at work can receive different types of financial support to cover their injury-related expenses. This includes:
Unlike a personal injury claim, workers can receive benefits regardless of being at fault for a job-related accident. However, injured employees can not recover compensation for damages typically awarded in a personal injury case.
Common Causes of Workplace Injuries
The top three leading causes of work-related injuries make up more than 84% of all nonfatal injuries at work. This includes:
Overexertion and Repetitive Motion Injuries
Overexertion injuries can occur when a worker uses excessive physical effort to do a task and gets injured. This includes lifting, pushing, turning, holding, carrying, or throwing.
Repetitive motion triggered by stress or strain on some part of the body is because of 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 an assembly line.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Slip and fall accidents are among the most common on-the-job injuries. They account for 25% of yearly injury cases, 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 other structures.
Injuries from Contact with Equipment and Objects
Contact with equipment and objects refers to injuries that occur when an individual is hit by something or bumps into something. This can include a worker being struck by a moving object, bumping into or being pushed in front of an object, being crushed in equipment, or being caught in cable or rope. It might also include incidents like an employee being struck or crushed by collapsing structures, equipment, or materials.
Workers' Compensation Can Also Cover Occupational Illnesses
Along with being injured, employees can also get sick with an illness due to their job. When this occurs, workers compensation insurance is designed to help cover some of the expenses.
Work-related illnesses include diseases that arise from hazardous work environments or workplace exposures. Some common illnesses that occur on the job include:
Cases involving job-related illness are complex for a number of 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 even more complicated by the fact that many illnesses develop over time, which makes them harder to recognize and to determine the origin.
What Should I Do If I Am Hurt at Work?
If you get injured during your employment, you should always report the accident, injury, or condition as soon as possible to your employer. This is necessary even if an injury appears minor. This, because injuries that seem minor initially can end up being much more severe in the coming days or weeks.
For example, an injury that may feel like only a strained muscle can end up being a symptom of long-term nerve damage. Or a sore lower back from lifting a heavy object could be a disc herniation that requires surgery.
Additionally, you should always have a work-related injury examined by a medical professional. This is the only way to find out the extent of your injury, and what can be done to recover. This is especially important for stress or repetitive motion injuries. Here, making changes in the ergonomic environment may not only cure the injury, but help to prevent injuries to others. Furthermore, to protect the long-term ability of an employee to keep and carry on in his or her job.
Lastly, waiting too long to report an injury on the job may foreclose your right to claim any kind of workers' compensation benefits.
Should You Contact a Van Nuys Workers' Compensation Attorney?
Consequently, if sustain an on-the-job injury in Van Nuys, speak to the Van Nuys personal injury attorneys at Drake Law Firm. Don't go through these hard times on your own. We are here to assist you with your case. We know the causes and effects of work accidents and injuries. Also, we understand the laws and regulations related to 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.