Employers in Charlotte, NC have a duty to provide a safe and sanitary workplace in order to keep employees free from injury or illness. However, regardless of how safe a particular work site may be, accidents and injuries do happen. In fact, nearly three million workers suffered work-related injuries or illnesses in 2012 and 4,383 more workers were killed, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Both North Carolina and South Carolina laws aim to provide injured or ill workers with some relief through worker’s compensation programs. Filing a worker’s compensation claim can be a complicated process, during which one of any number of mistakes may limit or eliminate your chances to be approved for the workers’ compensation benefits you deserve.

Common Workplace Injuries and Illnesses

Some industries naturally have a higher risk for injury than others; however, accidents and injuries may occur under even the most innocuous of circumstances, such as in a quiet office building. Some of the most commonly reported workplace injuries and illnesses include:

  • Overexertion;
  • Slip and fall accidents;
  • Injuries from motor vehicle accidents;
  • Falling from ladders, scaffolding, or other heights;
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome or other repetitive trauma injuries;
  • Being struck by a falling object;
  • Electrocution;
  • Chemical burns; and
  • Inhalation of toxic substances.

Some of these accidents cause minor injuries, but some can cause permanent disability or even death.

Receiving Worker’s Compensation Benefits

Ideally, the worker’s compensation program will compensate workers injured on the job for the following losses:

  • Necessary medical treatment;
  • Lost wages for time off work to recover;
  • Permanent disability benefits;
  • Serious impairments or disfigurements; and
  • Death benefits to survivors of workers who died from their injuries.

Many people in Charlotte, NC who are injured on the job may think that they will simply file a workers’ compensation claim and automatically begin receiving these benefits. That is not always the case, however, as your employer and its insurance company may try to limit your benefits as much as possible or disqualify you for coverage altogether. They can attempt to do this in a number of ways, such as claiming you did not follow proper procedures, claiming the accident was your fault (e.g., you were intoxicated), or using company doctors to report your injuries as less serious than they truly are. Companies want to protect their bottom lines and, unfortunately, sometimes this includes minimizing workers’ compensation payouts.

What Should I do After a Workplace Injury?

Following a workplace accident in North Carolina or South Carolina, you should always tell your supervisor that you have been injured or suffered illness. Next, you should seek medical treatment, using the company’s doctor if necessary. Finally, you should seek legal advice before you even begin the process of filing a workers’ compensation claim.

Please contact our Attorneys firm, and let us see if we can help you receive the full benefits you deserve for your workplace injury or illness.