Work injuries can happen at any time to anyone. It doesn’t matter if you have worked at a place for an hour or for twenty years. However, if you are newer to a job or you feel your employment there is in a more precarious position for whatever reason, if you get hurt work, you might try to hide that status for fear of losing your job.
It seems pretty harmless, right? After all, it is your body and you can do with it as you please. However, are there any risks about not reporting a work-related injury?
The biggest risk is obviously if a seemingly small injury turns into something major and serious. Not only will the injury and the medical treatment keep you out of work, but if you failed to report the work injury, it may be too late to file for worker’s compensation. If you don’t file an injury report and suddenly six months later you need surgery, your claim is going to be a difficult process to win.
Successful worker’s compensation claims heavily depend on medical documentation. If you don’t file an injury report and then go get checked out by a doctor, there is no paper trail of medical documentation that says you got hurt at work. You could have gotten hurt doing anything in those six months that you didn’t report and injury, and because of that, it is more likely that your claim will be declined. This means you won’t be able to receive the wage loss benefits, vocational rehabilitation assistance, or medical reimbursement that worker’s compensation provides.
However, by not reporting a work injury, it is likely that you are actually making you worst fears come true in the first place. It is likely that you didn’t report your injury because you feared for the safety of your job. However, if there is no proof that you got hurt at work and the injury does start to impede your job, then there is absolutely nothing stopping your employer from firing you. After all, if you can’t do your job, why should they pay you? Worker’s compensation and worker’s rights have regulations in place to make sure an injured worker who got hurt at work will keep their job, protecting them from being fired. So by not reporting your injury, you are surrendering that protection.
What to do if you are hurt at work and afraid to report it?
If you don’t report and injury, you set yourself up for some big problems, but that doesn’t stop you from fearing for your position. If you were hurt, but are afraid to report the injury, the best option is to contact an experienced worker’s compensation attorney. You would be surprised how a little information can help ease big fears. They can help you make an informed decision on if you should report the injury or not and the likelihood that it might turn into something more serious. A good worker’s compensation attorney will also help you understand your rights as an employee by letting you know what they can and can’t fire you for so you can be assured that your position in the company is secure even if you have only worked there for a short time.
If you need the advice or representation of a good worker’s compensation lawyer in the Mankato area, contact us today. The law offices of Chesley, Harvey & Carpenter represent the rights of the injured worker to make sure they get the coverage they need for their work injuries and keep the jobs that they hope to return to.
Contact A Mankato Workers' Compensation Lawyer Today
Contact the law office of Chesley, Harvey & Carpenter today at (507) 625-3000 for a free case review. We are located in Mankato, Minnesota.