Here’s What to Do After a Work Injury

Construction Accidents, Personal Injury, Workers' Compensation

It can be hard to know what to do after a work injury while experiencing a range of emotions: anger, stress, fear, depression, and overwhelm.

Taking the right steps after a work injury can help reduce stress, improve your chances of recovery, and return to normal faster.

Here are the five steps you should take after a work injury.

What qualifies as a work injury?

A work injury is any physical harm that occurs while performing work-related duties. Injuries range in severity and permanence and can occur in or out of the workplace. Hazardous working conditions, such as construction sites, can cause severe injuries like paralysis, while desk jobs can cause slips and falls or orthopedic injuries.

After enduring a work injury, you may qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation is an insurance system that provides financial and medical benefits for workers unable to perform their jobs after work-related injuries. Recovering benefits can help you pay medical debts and maintain your financial responsibilities while you’re out of work. Full-time, part-time, temporary, and seasonal employees are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.

What should I do after a work injury?

If you were recently injured at work, you may wonder, “What do I do next?” When in doubt, always put your health and safety first. Then, think about the future and be proactive.

After a work injury:

  1. Seek immediate medical attention.
  2. Report the injury to your employer.
  3. Keep all important records.
  4. File a workers’ compensation claim.
  5. Seek legal help.

1. Seek medical attention immediately.

First and foremost, always seek medical attention. Even if you’re in stable condition, a doctor can help you determine the severity of your injury. Delaying or ignoring symptoms can make your injury worse and negatively influence recovery.

2. Report your work injury to your employer.

Next, report your work injury to your employer as soon as possible. Your employer must know about the injury. Do not worry about retaliation or negatively impacting your coworkers. Employers must follow specific steps after a workplace injury; reporting your injury is the first step. Failure to report the injury to your employer can harm your chances of recovering workers’ compensation benefits.

3. Keep all important records.

Always keep all documents, records, and digital notes of your injury and treatment. Saving medical documentation is best practice in all situations, but it’s imperative when receiving treatment for a work injury. Detailed medical records can help your lawyer build your claim or case.

4. File a workers’ compensation claim.

As soon as possible, file a workers’ compensation claim. Workers’ compensation can speed up your recovery by covering medical expenses and lost wages. You cannot be penalized, and your employer legally cannot fire you in retaliation for filing a workers’ comp claim. If your employer denied your claim or your injury occurred more than 30 days ago, consult your lawyer immediately.

Though many workers’ compensation claims are straightforward and don’t require litigation, we recommend consulting a lawyer after a work injury, especially for severe injuries like paralysis. An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can help you build your case and achieve the best possible outcome.

How We Help

If you’ve been severely injured at work, Golitko & Daly’s experienced workers’ compensation lawyers can help you physically, financially, and emotionally rebuild your life. 

To schedule a free consultation, call us at 317-566-9600 (Indianapolis), 765-865-9300 (Bloomington), or 812-566-2600 (Kokomo), or complete our online inquiry form.