Most workers perform their job duties in collaboration with others. So when a worker suffers an on-the-job injury, there is a strong probability that there is at least one witness who can verify the injured worker’s story.
But even employees who work in close collaboration with others most of the time occasionally work alone or out of the sight of other workers. What happens when there is no witness to a workplace injury? Unwitnessed work injuries happen every day, but unfortunately a significant number of workers’ compensation claims for such injuries are initially denied. This blog post will discuss this problem and provide tips that can help an injured worker document the circumstances of the injury.
When there are no witnesses to a work injury
Unwitnessed job injuries can happen in many different ways. You may be stacking inventory in a remote part of the warehouse when it fell on you. Your boss may have asked you to run an errand off the worksite and you were hit by a car. You may have been assaulted by a co-employee and now it’s your word against his. Each of these examples is a legitimate work injury that can entitle an injured employee to workers’ compensation benefits.
The more documentation you can provide about the accident and your injury, the more difficult it will be for the insurer to deny your claim. Here are some things you can do to strengthen your claim:
- Report the injury to your employer as soon as possible.
- When reporting the injury, be as specific as you can about the circumstances of the accident. Provide as many details as you can, including the time and place of the injury, and how the accident happened.
- When talking with your doctor, make sure to thoroughly explain all of your symptoms and your work limitations. Don’t exaggerate or be dramatic about it – just be honest and thorough. This will get vital information into your record, making it more difficult for the insurance company to deny the extent of your injury.
You may also want to discuss your case with a workers’ compensation lawyer. Chances are, the lawyer has experience handling claims involving unwitnessed work injuries and can provide the representation you need.